12’s a magic number for Millie

If Millie O’Sullivan ever wants to pick a lucky number for herself, she will find it almost impossible not to opt for 12.

While several more schoolchildren like herself will be celebrating a very special day today — their 12th birthday on the 12th day of the 12th month in the 12th year of the new century — Millie takes the sequence one remarkable step further.

The youngster from Castletownbere, Co Cork, was born at 12 minutes past 12, on the 12th of the 12th, 12 years ago.

And the happy-go-lucky 12-year-old is taking it all in her stride. In fact, her friends are far more excited about her unique birthday than she is.

“All my friends think it’s really funny because there are so many 12s in my birthday,” said Millie, who has two sisters, Katie, 8, and Aoife, 7.

According to the CSO, there were 209 children born in Ireland who turn 12 today — 120 boys and 89 girls.

However, Millie is not one of them — she was born at the Bradford Royal Infirmary in West Yorkshire, England.

Her mother, Alyson, originally from Yorkshire but of Irish-born parents, moved back to Ireland with husband, Kieran, nine years ago.

Alyson is a driver for the out-of-hours GP service SouthDoc and a gymnastics coach, and Kieran, originally from Castletownbere, is a sub-officer in Castletownbere Fire Station and a fish buyer for Shellfish De La Mer.

“Millie will be training with the junior gymnastic squad on her birthday but we will meet my mother for a bit of cake beforehand, and she will have a sleepover with her friends at the weekend,” said mum, Alyson.


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