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Quads’ Mom Says She’s Ignored

October 17, 1998

AVONDALE, Ariz. (AP) _ Martha Villicana expected some attention when she gave birth to quadruplets earlier this year. She wasn’t ready for scorn and undeserved notoriety.

By sheer coincidence, Ms. Villicana lives just two blocks away from Elizabeth Whittle, another woman who gave birth to four babies earlier this year.

But Ms. Whittle is no longer caring for her quadruplets _ she is in jail pending trial on 14 charges that she abused them. And the fallout has affected Ms. Villicana.

``When I was calling for donations or charity work for Martha, people would ask if she was the same mother (Whittle),″ said Lisa Izquierdo, a caseworker for Southwest Human Development. ``People have even called her and said, `I thought you didn’t have your babies anymore.‴

Ms. Izquierdo said Ms. Villicana, 28, keeps the babies content, clean and fed all the time.

``She’s very assertive and she does voice her needs and concerns,″ the caseworker said. ``She doesn’t want to be misjudged because of the other quad mom.″

Ms. Villicana, a single mother who calls her babies a gift from God, says she is disturbed by the suspicious stares from people who confuse her babies with the other ``Avondale quads.″

``If people want to know me and know the babies, they’re welcome to come and help out,″ she said.

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