MONTROSE, MI — For seven months, Korey and Sharon Rademacher plotted and schemed to keep a secret from their loved ones.
Some called it the “best kept secret” — and the reveal brought laughter, tears and a major shock to the couple’s family members in Michigan and beyond.
And it was all caught on camera.
Maryann Faith and Brianna Grace were born March 12 in Florida. But before they were born, the Rademachers didn’t tell anyone they were expecting twins.
When family and friends came to meet the newest addition to the family and see if they had a new son or a new daughter, they were floored by the news of two twin girls.
Some broke down in tears of joy and others dropped their jaws in absolute shock.
Korey, a Montrose native, videotaped family members’ individual reactions and made a compilation video that quickly spread online, and had more than 1.3 million views as of Wednesday afternoon.
One by one, the video shows family members being called into the delivery room, where the twins are revealed behind a curtain. In some cases, it shows family members’ emotional and hilarious reactions via Skype.
The Rademachers said they never expected for the video to be so popular. They made it to be able to share with all their families in Michigan and Pennsylvania.
“It was a hard secret to keep but it was worth it in the end,” said Sharon, 33. “I watched all the reactions so many times after. … You would crack up. It was almost every person that asked ‘Did you know?'”
Korey grew up in Montrose, about 20 miles north of Flint, and attended Genesee Christian School. He moved out to Florida for college, where he met Sharon who is from Pennsylvania. They have been married for five years.
The secrets started on August 12, 2014, when the couple had their first ultrasound. They already knew they wanted to be surprised by the sex of the baby. They did the same with their son Jameson, who is now 2 years old.
But when their ultrasound showed two babies, they knew exactly what they wanted to do.
“My jaw hit the floor (when we found out we were having twins). The first two things I thought of was we need a bigger car and a bigger house,” Korey, 31, said with a laugh.
But then they both had another thought.
“(The doctor) walked out we looked at each other and said we should not tell anyone. (I said) ‘Yeah, let’s do it,'” he said
So Korey went and bought a video camera, and they learned how to keep the ultimate secret. They told no one — except for a few complete strangers, Korey and Sharon admitted.
Sharon wore loose fitting shirts and dresses to try and hide the fact that her stomach was bigger than it may be with only one baby. They talked to each other a lot about the reality of having twins, since they had to keep their family out of the loop.
And then on March 12, after Maryann and Brianna were born, they were finally able to share their news.
“To say we were anxious was an understatement,” Korey said. “It was awesome, obviously emotional. It was great. They made the wait worth it to see everybody’s reactions.”
Some visitors came to the hospital. Others were told at the Rademachers’ home, while some were told via Skype.
The sweetest reaction was probably from Sharon’s mom, who showed up to the hospital with balloons, and her dad, who was told over Skype. But the funniest, they agreed, was Sharon’s sister, Kristen.
She was left speechless and with a blank stare.
“(Telling people) was fun. We had (several) months to process. They literally had five seconds. Just to see their brain spinning was great,” Korey said. “We honestly didn’t know the sex of the babies. We did that with our son, too. We thought we would go over the top and give them a bigger surprise this time around.”
Korey’s dad, Clem Rademacher, of Clio, traveled to Florida a few days after his new granddaughters were born still thinking there was only one baby.
Clem Rademacher sat on the couch with his wife, Jean Rademacher, and they were told to close their eyes and hold out their arms.
Clem peeked a little when his wife was handed one of their granddaughters thinking he had nothing to worry about since she was already holding a baby. Then he was given the surprise.
“It was quite amazing,” he said. “Korey loves to shock people. … He loves to surprise and shock people I think he thinks that’s the spice of life. … I can’t imagine what else he can do to top this one.”
That was his 13th and my 14th grandchild.
“They’re just so precious and beautiful,” Clem Rademacher said. “It’s been such a blessing.”
Korey’s sister, Kelly Glupker, of White Lake didn’t find out about the twins until two weeks after they were born. She was told that her brother and his wife had a girl but she was made to believe it was only one.
Then on March 28, Glupker and three of her kids finally were able to Skype with Korey and Sharon.
Korey showed one of his daughters on the screen asking his sister if she looked different than the photos. Glupker couldn’t really tell. And then Korey told her he never sent photos of her.
“In my mind I kept thinking, ‘What kind of a dumb joke is that? You’ve been sending me a picture of a friend’s baby?’ He all of a sudden put in the second baby so that both babies are on the screen,” Glupker said. “My mind just freezes.
“My brother loves to surprise people. He thought this is a great opportunity to surprise everyone and they just jumped on it.”
Sharon was just happen they were able to pull it off.
They staggered telling their family in order to get the best reactions from each one. And each one was unique and priceless.
Sharon and Korey continue to watch the video over and over again.
“I hoped we could pull it off but I didn’t know if we could because I knew I would be big and people would be asking questions,” Sharon said. “I’m still surprised we pulled it off.”
Both daughters are healthy and doing great.
“My wife deserves all the credit. She’s just the one who gave birth to them and is taking care of them while I’m at work,” Korey said. “God’s blessed us.”