Triumph through Adversity

 This is the bedroom where Mumzy slept.

This the bed where Mumzy was sleeping when the fire started.

I am not a writer but  I am compelled to share  the story of how my 100 year old grandmother saved my life. Ann Williams aka Mumzy was born in North Carolina in 1916. So, that makes her 100 years old as of last July. Due to her strong faith and determination she is still able to watch over and protect her family with a sound mind.
I am her granddaughter Marcia Pemberton and together with my mother Brenda Pemberton all three generations lived together. Mother,Aunt Lorraine and I worked together as a team to care for Mumzy with the goal of enhancing the quality of her life, and keeping her out of a nursing facility. We were managing pretty well until...
On Friday October14,2016 after deciding at the last minute to cancel some plans after work ,I arrived home around 11;30pm. I checked on my mother and Mumzy who were sound asleep . Shortly after I had retired for the  evening . I thought I heard Mumzy's  voice saying "help". I thought she was just trying to rouse my mother to assist her to the commode, so I didn't think much of it. Then seconds later a heard a more emphatic and desperate plea from Mumzy. She cried" Help me help me". I got up quckly noting that this was atypical behavior for her. I opened my door  to see Mumzy attempting to make it down the steps with a thick wall of black smoke and flames behind her. The bedroom that she and my mother had been sleeping minutes before was now completlely engulfed in flames and smoke.
I quickly made my way towrads her. I reassured her that I was not going to leave her but she had to keep moving. My mother's quick thinking called 911 for help and opened the front door which was critical because thick smoke was begining to fill every crevice of the house and it would have been impossible to see to navigate to the front the door to escape.
Through grace and mercy we escaped unharmed all three of us....... even the cats!!! Every living soul in the house survived. The most amazing part of this story is    neither my mother nor grandmother was aware that I was in the house- so they weren't calling for me. In my room with the door closed I was not aware of the gravity of the situation.The only thing that alerted me was the sound of Mumzy's voice calling for help..... She saved my life because there was not a moment to spare in evacuating.
The situation is  we are currently in temporary shelter and  making every effort to begin re-establishing our lives.The most critical need is  raising the money to find a new home that is safe for Mumzy . At the writing of this prose, we have a little less than 2 weeks to secure a new living situation. Mumzy even at 100 is still watching and protecting her family. Please help us that we may protect her and cherish her for the remaining time we are blessed to have her.


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Organizer and beneficiary

Pemberton Marcia 
Philadelphia, PA
Lorraine Philmore 
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