Posted on: September 28, 2015
Still in their mother’s womb, the outlook for twins Lizzy and Jenny Hays wasn’t good.
During their mother’s pregnancy, the sisters were diagnosed with twin-to-twin transfusion syndrome (TTTS). TTTS is a rare condition that occurs between identical twins when the placenta’s blood vessels are connected, resulting in one baby receiving too much blood flow while the other receives too little.
Dr. Lawrence Stone provided the prenatal care and intervention for the girls, before determining the least-risky course of action was extracting Lizzy and Jenny by C-section.
Soon after birth, the doctor advised the girls’ parents to prepare for the possibility of mental and physical retardation in addition to cerebral palsy.
Thirteen years later, the Hays family found a new home in the sunny beach community of San Clemente, California. The twins attended San Clemente High School, known for its ample AP courses and an extensive International Baccalaureate program. In addition to its high academic standards, the school was also known for its competitive athletics program.
Lizzy, who was born with her umbilical cord wrapped around her neck, was on the high school cross-country and track teams all four years of high school. Her junior year she helped lead the cross-country team to the California state championship and win their division. She was also on the school's sailing team and was elected prom queen out of 750 graduating students.
Jenny was on the high school soccer team for two years, and joined her sister on the sailing team in addition to the prom court.Both academically gifted, the sisters received offers from the prominent universities of UCLA and UC Berkeley. Lizzy is currently attending UCLA, majoring in cognitive science and Jenny is attending UC Berkeley, majoring in environmental economics. Both are on their respective university’s sailing teams, and occasionally race against each other.
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