Dean Deb leaps into quadrennial birthday


Photo by Hannah Klimas

Imagine not turning a year older every year. That’s impossible though, right? Not for .07% of the world’s population. A very small number of people are born on Feb 29 every four years, and these “leaplings” don’t celebrate another year of aging on their birthdays every year. Only about 205,000 people in the U.S. have a February 29th birthday. Included in this select group of people is our very own Dean Deborah Scerbicke. Dean Deb has had less birthdays than a large number of students attending Saint Viator High School. Technically, our Dean isn’t even a legal adult.

In her short number of years on this earth, Dean Deb has only met one other person sharing her unique birthday. 

“There was one other student here at Viator who graduated maybe 10 years ago. He didn’t want anyone else to know, but I knew because his mother told me. He’s the only one.”

Being born on Leap day means birthdays are a pretty big deal for Dean Deb.

Of course for a child, only having a birthday every four years wouldn’t be too appealing.

“I hated it when I was younger because I have three brothers and they would all tease me. They would tell me, ‘It’s not your real birthday so we don’t have to get you anything.’ So now I tell them on my real birthdays they better go all out.”

Her favorite birthday celebration occurred back in college. Her roommate’s dad was a pig farmer and owned a farm not far from her school.

“My friends kidnapped me, tied me up, threw me in the back of their truck, and threw me in with the pigs for a while. Then they took me to McDonald’s. It was fun sitting in the pen with all the little piggies!” said Dean Deb.

Because Feb. 29 only comes every four years, Dean Deb would celebrate her birthday on Feb. 28 with her family every other year. 

“I was born on the last day of February, so the 28th was the closest possible date to my real birthday.”

Family and friends make Dean Deb’s birthday fun. She’s loved her unique birthday almost her whole life and this year she plans on celebrating with the whole school. Don’t forget to wish Dean Deb a happy birthday if you see her in the halls tomorrow!