As the woman smelled the man all alarm bells rang. 3 minutes later she lay with a smashed face in front of the kindergarten.
Martha McClure from Ronan in Montana (USA) is a mother of 5 and for more than 20 years she has been a guardian to other children, who come to daycare at her own home. "As soon as the mothers give their children to me at 6:30, they belong to me. They're my responsibility and I would give my life to protect them", said the 41 year old. But she had never though that the situation would literally occur.
On the morning of the 7th of October, Francis Joseph Jackson and his girlfriend went to Martha's house and wanted to take his 3 children. Even from a distance the daycare-mother could smell the alcohol on the 31-year old's breath. The father had lost custody of the 3 children a long time ago, and they had were growing up with relatives and had the strictest prohibition of contact. Therefore, when Martha refused to let the children go into his charge, the man went crazy. He yelled and berated her, threatening to kill her in front of the children. The only thing that Martha could think of, was to get her wards to safety. She shoved the man out of the house and closed the door.
This however, is where the nightmare began. The aggressive father threw a tricycle at the window of the house, trying to get back in. The mother of 5 stood in the man's way - but then the 21-year old girlfriend picked up a snow shovel and whacked Martha clean in the face. As the daycare mother lay on the ground, Francis Joseph Jackson hammered down on her again and broke more of the bones in her face, before he and his girlfriend finally searched the area.
While she phoned the police for help, Martha covered her severely beaten face so that she didn't scare the children in the house. "They don't know what Happen", said the 41-year old. "I don't want my house to be the place that something bad happened for them. For many of them, this is their second home." The picture of Martha's badly battered face has spread around the world and this heroine is being celebrated.
"For me, this wasn't a heroic act", explained the american. "For me, it was just what I had to do. I am the mother of these children whilst ever they're with me. Did I know that he would hurt me? Yeah. Did I hope that he wouldn't? Of course. But would I do it again? Absolutely! It's what every mother would do."