People seeing double a lot at Roanoke this year

Eight sets of twins at Roanoke Elementary School celebrated the last days of school this year by getting together for a group photo. Pictured are (front row, from left) Kennedy Zahm, Sophia Scheer, Matthew Gross, Chloe Horne, Ethan Kelsey, Layla Wigmore, Delaney Molitor and Ellison Smith; and their siblings (back row, from left), Jerica Zahm,  Stella Scheer, Tyler Gross, Danny Horne, Evan Kelsey, Logan Wigmore, Alexis Molitor and Elliott Smith.
Eight sets of twins at Roanoke Elementary School celebrated the last days of school this year by getting together for a group photo. Pictured are (front row, from left) Kennedy Zahm, Sophia Scheer, Matthew Gross, Chloe Horne, Ethan Kelsey, Layla Wigmore, Delaney Molitor and Ellison Smith; and their siblings (back row, from left), Jerica Zahm,  Stella Scheer, Tyler Gross, Danny Horne, Evan Kelsey, Logan Wigmore, Alexis Molitor and Elliott Smith. Photo provided.

Originally published June 1, 2017.

This past year at Roanoke Elementary School, people were seeing double a lot more than at other Huntington County schools — make that double times eight.

The school had eight sets of twins this year — three sets of girls, three sets of boys and two sets of boy/girl twins.

“We have kind of a ‘twin anomaly’ here,” says Principal Chris Tillett. “They’re just cute … They’re a lot of fun.”

The twins are Kennedy and Jerica Zahm, Sophia and Stella Scheer, Matthew and Tyler Gross, Chloe and Danny Horne, Ethan and Evan Kelsey, Layla and Logan Wigmore, Delaney and Alexis Molitor and Ellison and Elliott Smith.

No one can say exactly why the phenomenon is magnified at Roanoke Elementary. This past year there were two sets of twins at Andrews Elementary, two at Flint Springs, two at Lancaster, three at Lincoln, three at Northwest and two at Salamonie, none even coming close to Roanoke.

“I’m not sure why it’s happened,” says Tammy Winans, library clerk at the school. “We’re just lucky, I guess … We don’t normally have that many. Over the years we’ve had a few, here and there, but I don’t believe we’ve had this many.”

With that many sets of “Petes and Repeats” at the school, most are well-behaved citizens and haven’t pulled any twin-related pranks, Winans says, other than the fact that some of them are identical to the eye.

“Some of them are really hard to tell apart. I still don’t know the ones that look exactly alike. I don’t know that they have played any pranks — maybe they have and we don’t know about it,”  she adds.

Tillett says the kids are a lot of fun, if not something of a challenge to sort out.

“There are a few of them that I have trouble sometimes telling apart in regards to making sure I get their names right, so I do still get those wrong every now and then,” he says. “But otherwise, not any incidents in regards to, fortunately, pranks or any of those kinds of things. They can save that for secondary school.”

Some of the twins were even in the same classroom together. Delaney and Alexis Molitor were in Katelin Herber’s first-grade class, while Layla Wigmore and her brother Logan spent their first grade in Courtney Woods’ class.

Alexis Molitor says being in class with her sister Delaney has been a fun experience.

“We help each other do stuff,” she says. “Like …”

“Math,” Delaney finishes for her, in classic twin behavior.

“And reading,” they say together.

“Sometimes I get an ‘underdog’ for her, and then I swing and sometimes she does it for me,” Alexis says. “Underdog,” they explain, refers to the pushing person running under someone who is sitting on the swing after they push them forward.

However, Logan Wigmore says being in the same classroom with his sister Layla hasn’t been as much fun this year.

“I will tell you that she’s mean!” he exclaims, adding he doesn’t always get along with his sibling.

“Sometimes we fight,” he explains.

“We fight over our toys,” Layla chips in.

“We fight to see who sits in the front, to sit by Lulu,” Logan adds. “She’s our baby sister.”

Layla is the older of the two. But when pressed, Logan says it really gets down to classroom competition.

“I’m a 140 AR (accelerated reading) points. She’s 135 AR,” he says, declaring he’s the smarter twin.

He admits, though, that he enjoys eating pizza with his sister, and Layla says they like playing together on the school playground.

Their teacher, Courtney Woods, says she’s enjoyed having the Wigmore twins in her class this year. She also had half of another set, Kennedy Zahm, in her class as well.

“The twins don’t even really recognize that each other is in the class,” Woods says. “They don’t really acknowledge each other. And the split twins, they kind of do their own thing as well. They wave to each other and give each other hugs in the hallway, but that’s about it.”

Kennedy Zahm, whose twin Jerica was in another first grade classroom the past year, provided some unsolicited insight into why she and Jerica had different teachers.

“All we do is fight,” Kennedy says. “And then we get in trouble. And it’s all my fault.”

And not to worry — even though fifth graders Sophia and Stella Scheer are moving on to middle school in the fall, Roanoke will likely keep its title as the HCCSC school with the most twins attending at the same time.

“We’re getting another set; we’re supposed to have kindergartners next year, so we’ll still have eight next year, if everyone stays here,” Winans says.