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Dad, meet your new family
New family: Kristie Hoskins with her three 16-week-old babies Matilda, Parker and Oliver, and sons Jet, 17, Alex, 11, and Jaydon, 3. Picture: Nathan Dyer/The West Australian

Four months after giving birth to quadruplets, Kristie Hoskins decided to have another go at tracking down the father she had only ever met once.

On a whim, the Melbourne mother of six posted a message late last Wednesday night on her Facebook page asking people to help find her dad.

All she had to go on was one 30-year-old photograph, his name, Reginald James Rowe, and his last known location, Cue.

"I have only met him once when I was 15," her message said. "I would love to find him and introduce him to my beautiful family."

Within hours, her plea had been shared more than 3000 times.

By the next morning, her mobile phone was full of messages. Then she answered a call from a WA number.

"Is that Kristie," the caller said. "This is Dad."

Reg Rowe, 63, who lives in the coastal town of Cervantes, does not use Facebook but woke on Thursday to texts, phone messages and emails from people all over Australia saying his long-lost daughter was trying to get in touch. "I couldn't believe it," he said. "It's totally life-changing."

He has been struggling to cope since the death of his other daughter 18 months ago.

Jodie, who was five years older than Kristie and from a different relationship, was his only other child.

Ms Hoskins was also touched by grief recently when one of her quadruplets, Sunny, was stillborn.

Mr Rowe said "there was a waterfall coming off the end of the table" as they spoke for the first time in 20 years.

He plans to fly to Melbourne on Friday for Ms Hoskins' 35th birthday and to meet his six grandchildren - Jet, 17, Alex, 11, Jaydon, 3, and four-month-old Matilda, Parker and Oliver.

The manager of a gypsum mine north of Jurien Bay, Mr Rowe spends his free time fishing, stargazing through his telescope and working on a bus he is converting to a motor home so he can head into the bush to go prospecting for gold.

Only last week friends had asked him if he had ever heard from the daughter he never knew.

"I said I hadn't, but in the back of my head, at night time, I'd sit down and have a beer and wish that some day she'd contact me," he said.

Ms Hoskins said she had tried a few times over the years to find her father.

She was prompted to try again after a friend from Perth told her she'd dreamt that she had come to WA to visit her.

After telling the friend she might visit WA one day because her father lived there, it occurred to her she had a Facebook page with links to thousands of people that she could ask for help to find him.

"It's pretty amazing that you can put one picture up and find somebody that you otherwise know pretty much nothing about," she said.

Ms Hoskins, who was born in Mildura, Victoria, has been estranged from her mother for many years and did not know how her parents came to lead separate lives on different sides of the continent. Mr Rowe said he met Ms Hoskins' mother at the Cocklebiddy roadhouse on the Nullarbor.

"She was a bit of a wild girl and I was an irresponsible larrikin," he said.

After she fell pregnant, she wanted to go back home to Victoria to have the baby and never returned.

Mr Rowe said Ms Hoskins' mother had sent him a few pictures of their daughter when she was a child.

He conceded he could have done more to stay in contact and vowed to make the most of the second chance he had been given.

"I feel now I really have something worth living for," he said.