Alabama Woman Is Raising 12 Kids After Her Sister, Brother-In-Law Died

Alabama Woman Is Raising 12 Kids After Her Sister, Brother-In-Law Died

Francesca McCall and her sister Chantale agreed that they would take care of each other's children if anything were ever to happen to them.

Francesca McCall and her sister Chantale came to an agreement years ago—they would take care of each other's children if anything were ever to happen to them. However, never in her wildest dreams had the 40-year-old thought that the moment would arrive. Unfortunately, 2020 happened. Chantale McCall, 35, died of complications related to Coronavirus at the UAB Hospital in September after she was airlifted to the hospital from her home in Selma. Just over a month later, on her birthday, her 40-year-old husband Lance Martin, also died from the virus. With a dear promise to uphold, McCall took in her sister's five kids because she didn't want them to be separated, reports AL.com.



The situation is strained for the single mother from Birmingham, Alabama as she already has 7 biological children of her own from the age of 2 to 17. Talking about the death pact the sisters made, McCall said of her four sisters: "We are very close. We always used to have discussions like, "If anything happened to any of us, we knew that we wouldn’t want our children to be separated. When [UAB Hospital] called us up there, I told her that she wouldn’t have to worry. I would raise her kids and take care of them like my own." Despite living up to the promise, the insurance company worker who's working from home knows it's not easy as she's worried about not being able to care for her 12 children: Chayna, 2; Heavenly, 4; Trenton, 7; Aniyah, 11; Saaphyn, 13; Destiny, 14; and LaKeria, 15 -- along with her sister’s five children -- Serenity, 5; Trinity, 6; Angel, 13; and De’Alan, 15. 



Her problem? What happens to the kids when the pandemic ends and her job demands her to be back in the office. She adds that her nephews and nieces have developed anxieties of their own as they are grieving the loss of their parents and are reluctant to step outside out of fear of contracting the virus. Despite a mountain of odds, McCall said, they are doing alright. "We’re doing OK. They have their [tough] moments at times, processing everything." At the moment the mom/aunt has set up two pairs of bunk beds in three of her bedrooms for all the children to sleep while receiving help from "God and my mother".


 When asked how she's able to deal with it all, she adds: "I’m taking it day by day." While she hasn't stretched her hand for any outside help, she's already receiving it from her church - West End Purity Holiness Church of God on Cotton Avenue in southwest Birmingham. Carla McDonald, the daughter of a former church pastor, and brother of the current one, along with her daughter Raven McDonald, have created a GoFundMe page in the family's stead to raise money for the children and their necessities. McCall has been a member of the church since McDonald's father led the congregation. Talking about her family's desire to help out, McDonald said: "My daughter and I wanted to do something special for the holidays for the children who lost their parents to COVID-19. Even with the emotions that she has gone through raising 12 children, [McCall] needs everlasting, everyday help, and she’s not the type of person to ask for anything."


McDonald's daughter Raven, added: "We reached out to her, saying ‘we want to help you,’". So far, their campaign has generated over $188,000 for the children, and much of the proceeds will go into buying a dryer and washer, winter coats, and clothing for the children, and most importantly, Christmas presents. McDonald also added that she is planning on an event in the church basement for McCall and her family to thank the donors who would also get to see first hand how their donations are helping the children. "We want her to see what people are blessing her with and they want to see this family because what she’s doing is amazing," she said.


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