Beth Laitkep, a single mom to 6 youngsters, determined out she had breast most cancers in 2014.
It changed into a coronary heart-wrenching second for two exceptional pals – one mendacity in a health facility bed, the opposite sitting with the aid of her aspect. One death from breast most cancers, the other promising to care for the younger lives she changed into leaving behind.
At a health facility in Virginia, the 2 ladies started to cry.
“‘Will you take my infants? Will you do that for me?'” 39-yr–old Stephanie Culley, from Alton, Virginia, saidher pal, Beth Laitkep, asked her. “I informed her yes, i would do it in a heartbeat.”
Laitkep, a unmarried mother to 6 children, discovered out she had breast most cancers in 2014, whenshe became pregnant along with her last – a boy named Ace – Culley advised The Washington put up on Saturday in a cellphone interview. Ace was introduced with the aid of emergency C-phase at 30 weeks, she said, so that Laitkep could begin competitive chemotherapy remedies.
with the aid of the subsequent yr, the remedies appeared to be working, Culley stated, and Laitkep and her kids moved from Texas to South Boston, Virginia.
In June 2015, a month after the circulate, Laitkep’s most cancers got here lower back; it became a time, Culley said, while the two ladies, who have been pals on the grounds that high school, started to reconnect. Culley said she started helping Laitkep with the house, taking her to health practitionerappointments and, then, sitting via her bedside when the drugs become now not assisting.
“I felt this pull to reconnect along with her,” Culley said, “this pull that I couldn’t prevent.”
The most cancers hit Laitkep’s bones and even though extra chemotherapy remedies regarded to conquer down the sickness yet again, Culley stated Laitkep soon started out to have ache in her backand in her legs. The cancer, she stated, had unfold to Laitkep’s brain and spine.
“The doctor told me that there has been nothing that might be finished,” Culley stated. “it really is whenwe started out talking about the youngsters.”
Culley said the father to the older kids wasn’t within the “image” and the father to the youngeryoungsters left as Laitkep was struggling with cancer. She said she couldn’t speak in addition whilstthe Culleys are in custody complaints.
Laitkep desired her kids to be cared for inside the identical way she could have cared for them. Shewanted them to be stored collectively – now not split up.
Culley laughed as she informed The Washington post approximately her pleasant buddy‘s “silliest” request – she desired them dressed with matching bows of their hair.
“At that point, we took the youngsters down to the health center for her to speak to them about it,” Culleystated. “We stated, ‘if you do now not get a miracle for Mommy, who do you want?’ all of them pointed to me. That melted my heart.”
Culley brought: “we all determined that become what we had to do – take they all and maintain them allcollectively as our circle of relatives.”
On might also 19, Laitkep died at 39, and Culley and her husband, Donnie, kept their phrase – taking thechildren as their personal.
“She fought as long as she likely may want to,” Culley wrote at the family‘s GoFundMe page, which as of Saturday afternoon had raised extra than $3,900. “She turned into worn-out.”
“I want to thank each certainly one of you that has shown your love and supported Beth and her familyduring this time,” Culley brought. “From making economic donations, all the food and just being therewhilst wished. it is been incredible, the guide in our network. As for the destiny, we are going to take in the future at a time, maintaining her memory alive and making new ones collectively as a family.”
Culley said she and her husband have transient custody of the six kids and are set to appear in court docket later this month to obtain permanent custody. The own family will talk about adoption in thedestiny, she said.
over the past few weeks, the Culleys have opened their family to take care of now 9 youngsters, a while 2to 15. Culley said the youngest, Ace, turns 2 on Sunday – a Mickey Mouse-themed day that she hopes will create lasting reminiscences for the kids.
“They recognise she’s an angel – they understand she’s with us every day,” Culley said. “Their favouriteelement to do is get balloons and send them as much as her.
“really, perhaps we will try this at the birthday party.”
Culley stated her friend‘s loss of life become “the maximum tough factor i have ever watched.”
“It felt like i was in slow movement,” she said. “It became heartbreaking.”
Culley said her family has been blessed – and that’s why she believes they have been chosen to blesssomeone else.
“people name me an angel – say i am a hero, but I do not assume absolutely everyone in my footwearwould have executed some thing exceptional,” she said, including: “We believe God has blessed us in our lives and this is the first-rate component we can do.”
As for the promises she made to her friend, Culley says she has kept all of them.
At Laitkep’s funeral, the complete family confirmed up in purple – and the ladies wore matching bows in their hair.
“they are exquisite youngsters. You can’t help fall in love with them,” she said about the most up-to-dateindividuals of the own family. “That day become the first day of our new existence. I sense like ourlifestyles is complete now. those six youngsters had been the six links we had been lacking from our lives.”
© 2016 The Washington publish
(This tale has not been edited through NDTV team of workers and is car-generated from a syndicated feed.)