Mildred Morris has spent almost her entire 90 years of life taking care of kids but she never knew exactly how much of her wisdom the kids absorbed until a 5-year-old under her care saved her life.
Morris, of Asheville, N.C., was doing laundry Friday when she fell down a flight of nine stairs and hit her head.
Five-year-old Jaylee Monteith, whom Morris has watched since Jaylee was 1, was walking just a few steps ahead and called 911 as soon as she saw Morris fall.
“Jaylee called 911 and said I needed help because I had fallen down the steps,” Morris told ABC News. “Then she went next door and said, ‘Wake up, wake up’ and my neighbor came over and helped.”
Morris was taken by ambulance to the hospital, where she received over a dozen stitches in her scalp.
“I think if I had stayed much longer, the blood was coming so quickly from my head, if they had not heard Jaylee, I probably would have been weakened or unconscious,” Morris said. “She’s a miraculous little girl.”
Morris says she watches Jaylee almost daily while her mother, Jazmyn Williams, studies to be a nurse.
“She’s never been to kindergarten so everything she learned is from me and her mother and father,” Morris said. “I knew she was capable but I didn’t know she’d be able to think that quickly.”
Morris, who estimates she has kept over 200 kids in her lifetime and says she was honored by then-first lady Nancy Reagan in the 1980s, is now recuperating at home with only a sore back and the staples in her head.
“I’m OK but I have a son and daughter-in-law who are so bossy I can’t take two steps,” she said of the extreme but loving care she is receiving.
Morris is also being uplifted by twice-daily visits from Jaylee and her parents, who are watching Jaylee at home while her beloved Morris recovers.
“It’s great to know that they remember something I have done for them,” Morris said of the kids she’s touched in her lifetime, which include both Jaylee and her mom. “It’s from my heart for all of them.
“You have to be sincere with kids and let them know that you love them.”