John Kienast was born in 1968, and was only 18 months old when he became a big brother - to quints! The first year after their birth was a difficult time for him. Although he was never really mean to the babies, he would sometimes push them down as they got older, and his parents declared the playpen off limits to him.
But the family, and their friends, all did their best to give John some extra attention. The most credit to John’s final acceptance of being a big brother probably goes to dad Bill, who had a very patient way of showing John attention. He would let John “help” him when he was working on the bathroom shelves, and when he was moving the lawn in his tractor John would usually be sitting in his lap.
By the time the quints were a little over a year old, John’s behaviour had changed so much that he was now allowed to be in the same play area as them. No longer was he trying to push them down - instead he would often be found happily playing together with his five younger siblings. He also loved to help out at bath time.
When John was six years old, he was still considered a bit of a conflict starter at home. But he could also show great compassion, especially in an emergency. When little brother Gordon had gashed his nose, John went with him to the hospital, and held a compress to Gordon’s nose, while dad Bill drove.
At this age John, who had always enjoyed drawing, had started drawing is own comic strips. He would later study art at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. In 2001 he worked as an artist, and also a tattoo artist (although he has no tattoos himself). He lives in Austin, Texas.
February 2009: John has been married to Marta since 2008 and lives in New Jersey where he works with Abby’s husband, Pat at his concert promotion company.