With this year being a Leap Year, a father and son in La Mesa, California, will actually get to celebrate their birthdays on Monday. Dad, Fred Shekoufeh, will turn 15 while his son, Eric, will celebrate his fifth birthday. It turns out both of them had the “misfortune” of being born on February 29.
According to the years that have passed, Fred will officially celebrate his 60th birthday, but in actual fact, Monday will be his 15th birthday.
Eric, on the other hand, will be celebrating his fifth official birthday, while in actual fact he will have been on this Earth for 20 years and is a student at UCLA and can drive a car.
According to an article in Time, the fact that father and son share the same birthday is pretty amazing. A parent and child being born on February 29th in a Leap Year apparently has a 1 in 2.1 million chance of happening, so it is pretty amazing.
This man turns 15 on Monday; his son turns 5 https://t.co/0yDYEmrm0S
— HuffPost Weird News (@HuffPostWeird) February 27, 2016
Reportedly Fred Shekoufeh was born in Iran, where they apparently don’t know about Leap Years, as he apparently only found out about it when he moved to the U.S. in 1979. Apparently on arrival, immigration officials commented on it.
Fred told the Huffington Post that it is confusing having a Leap Year date of birth, but since he found out about it, he celebrates his birthday when he can. According to Fred, however, the best birthday was in 1996 when he officially turned 10 years of age in a hospital delivery room.
That was February 29th, the day his son Eric was born, and according to Fred his former wife, who was in labor at the time, had said, “This is your birthday present.”
“When the doctor found that out, she said, ‘I will try to bring that baby out so it can share your birthday.'”
Eric, on the other hand, says that sharing such an unusual birthday each February 29 with his dad Fred is “pretty incredible,” but does say that having that birthday does offer up some challenges.
According to AOL, a lot of his friends tease him about whether he should celebrate his birthday on February 28 or March 1. Eric said he tries to stretch his birthday out over both days.
He said it is a weird day, as the social media doesn’t recognize his birthday, but when people find out, they never forget the date. According to Eric, his favorite Leap Year birthday was back in 2012 when he officially turned four years of age.
“Everyone and their mother made a joke about me turning four, and that four year olds shouldn’t be able to drive cars. Well, evidently I could.”
— GQ Magazine (@GQMagazine) February 26, 2016
He did say he was glad to have an actual birthday that year as he was getting his license and there was reportedly no confusion at the DMV. He hopes the same can be said when he goes out to celebrate his 21st birthday next year.
Eric plans to celebrate this year’s birthday at Big Bear and doesn’t plan to push it over to March 1. However, he does say he’s looking forward to next year, when he officially turns 21, saying that legally he should be able to drink on the 28th, but he expects a bouncer to look at his license and tell him it’s fake.
While it is pretty rare for a parent and child to both have a Leap Year birthday, back in 2012 The Inquisitr reported the story of a mother and daughter who also shared February 29 birthdays. According to Michelle Birnbaum, while her baby was due to be born on February 28, Rose was born on the 29th instead.
“It was just luck, all the stars lined up at the right time.”
Let’s wish a happy Leap Year birthday to both Fred and Eric and Michelle and Rose for this coming Monday and every fourth year after that.