Grand Valley twins gather in the fieldhouse and form a number '2' Overlayed are black and white photo insets of 5 sets of twins, one set of quadruplets and Louie and President Haas.

Twins, multiples 'Double their Laker Effect'

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Paul and Joe Lucchese bantered back and forth about who is the better looking brother. Joe said, “It’s me!” But when you and your brother are identical twins, who’s right?

The Luccheses, from Grosse Pointe, were among the students and alumni who celebrated family during “Twin+ Day,” held April 15 in the Fieldhouse Arena on the Allendale Campus.

There were 117 sets of twins, five sets of triplets and one set of quadruplets enrolled at Grand Valley during the 2018-2019 academic year. Laker alumni twins number 350. Sixty-five people doubled their Laker Effect at the event, held during an unusually late spring ice storm. The Galati quads came with their parents from Grosse Ile, 185 miles away.

Lorenzo Galati said he and his three sisters decided to come to Grand Valley together “because it had everything we wanted.” Nina joked it was easier on their parents to have one college move-in day, rather than four.

Jacqueline and Elizabeth Leonard Labadie, from Farmington Hills, are identical twins and also portray twins in TV shows and films, including a Sony Pictures movie, “Crowning Jules,” released last fall.

Jacqueline said they decided to come to Grand Valley together because of the size of the campus and the resources offered. “Everything here seems to set students up for success,” she said.

Briauna and Brittany Taylor graduated from Grand Valley in 2015 with degrees in nursing and business, respectively. They played varsity basketball and softball together and were part of an entrepreneurial team that created an electric sit-to-stand device to lift patients by their hips.

Briauna said she still occasionally pulls the “twin trick” on people. “Sometimes I’ll pretend that I’m Brittany, unless they say something really specific, and I’ll say, ‘You know what, I don’t know who you are,’” she said.

Carter Harrison, from Grosse Pointe Farms, said it was fun to be surrounded by multiples at the event. “Not a lot of people know what it’s like to be a twin, so it’s fun to be in a whole room of people who know the ins and outs of being a twin,” he said.

The first Twin Day at Grand Valley was held in 2014, when there were 103 sets of twins on campus.