Triplets give Ellis High School homecoming royalty unique look

By Randy Gonzales
Special to the Hays Daily News

There is a pretty good chance a Gottschalk will hear their name announced at Friday’s Homecoming crowning for Ellis High School. The question is which one.

Senior triplets Mason, Madison and Michelle Gottschalk, the children of Dean and Julie Gottschalk, are all Homecoming candidates. They were named Homecoming royalty after votes were cast for candidates by their fellow students.

Triplets, from left, Michelle, Mason and Madison Gottschalk have all been selected as Homecoming candidates at Ellis High School.

“I was happy to have been chosen by everybody in school, and also happy I get to be there with my sisters, too,” Mason said.

The siblings were surprised when they were announced as royalty last week. They are rooting for each other.

“They announced Michelle’s name before me and I was happy for her,” Madison said. “When I heard my name I was happier, that we would be together, along with my brother.”

Experiencing it together is special, they said.

“I am really proud, whatever happens, that all three of us had a chance to be (royalty),” Michelle said. “If one of my siblings get it and I don’t, I will be really happy that someone in my family got it.”

Michelle already has been honored by her fellow students, being named a junior class Snowball winner during the last basketball season.

The sisters’ mom helped with choosing their dresses for Friday’s big ceremony before the football game against Syracuse. However, Michelle became ill shortly after being chosen and was not able to shop for a dress.

That’s where Michelle’s sister-in-law came to the rescue. Bailey (Hensley) Gottschalk, who was named the school’s Homecoming queen in 2012, had an idea.

“Bailey had mentioned, ‘You could wear my dress,’ ” Julie Gottschalk said. “We went over there and she tried it on, fit her perfect.”

The triplets, 18, have an older brother, Daniel. Soon, like their brother, these days will be gone. Their mom said just enjoy the moment.

“Just happy for them,” she said. “They’re making memories. Just very proud.”

The siblings said being triplets means there is a shoulder to lean on.

“One of the benefits is always having someone,” Madison said. “On bad days, they’re my best friend. My sister and I still do everything together outside of school. We hang out together like best friends.”

Being nominated as Homecoming royalty says a lot about the triplets, said the school’s activities director, Derek Schoenthaler.

“It speaks to the character of the kids and their family the way they’ve all been recognized for this,” Schoenthaler said. “That’s the way the voting system is set up – peer-driven. Speaks volumes to who they are and how they carry themselves.”

The other Homecoming candidates are Lakyn Fischer; Tyson Jimenez; and Easton Burton. To have all three triplets also be nominated doesn’t just happen every day.

“It’s kind of unique how it’s happened like that,” Mason said.

Mom and dad are proud, said Julie.

“It’s just been a blessing every day with them, and to get to experience all of that with them,” she said. “It took us 13 years between our first-born and the triplets. We’ve enjoyed every single thing.”