For reasons not fully understood, a pregnant mother of three attempted to end her life and the life of her preborn baby by purposefully overdosing on medications in 1966. Her husband, finding her unconscious on the sofa, brought her to the hospital where she received treatment, and both she and her preborn son survived.
The failed abortion attempt
It was about 53 years later when Willard Lamont learned of his mother’s attempted abortion and suicide during her pregnancy with him, and for Lamont, that revelation brought understanding as to why his childhood had been so “horrible.”
“I was told that she had overdosed on aspirin and other medications in an attempt to take my life and take hers as well,” Lamont told Live Action News. “But I was told she also had fallen down a flight of stairs. She jumped down a flight of stairs in an attempt to end it.”
Lamont grew up believing that his parents hated him. He said he never heard ‘I love you’ or ‘Thank you’ but was called ‘stupid’ and ‘moron’ consistently. He was belittled and beaten and made to do manual labor around the house. His siblings — three older and one younger — were given birthday parties and treated well, but Lamont went without. He carried the pain of this mistreatment with him.
Then, when he was a 53-year-old married father of three, and his parents had both passed away, his aunt revealed the heartbreaking truth.
“During the midst of the conversation, [my aunt] slid forward and looked me in the eye and said, ‘Willard, your mother overdosed when she was pregnant with you’ and she went into all the details of what she remembered of what she did. I can remember that day as if it were this morning. The shock and the numbness that I felt, and the disbelief, but at the same time, it was a relief because I had a horrible, horrible childhood and young adulthood because I was raised by my mom and dad and was severely abused with several beatings.”
Lamont finally understood why he had been singled out as a child by his parents, and when he met other survivors of attempted abortions, he finally found the support he needed.
Finding fellow survivors
After seeing videos of abortion survivors Gianna Jessen and Melissa Ohden on Facebook, he contacted Ohden to learn more about the Abortion Survivors Network. At first, Lamont was unsure if he fit the description of an abortion survivor, but Ohden supported him and assured him that he did. Any attempt to end the life of a preborn child is an abortion attempt. Though his heart broke for his fellow survivors, Lamont was happy to find others who had been labeled “unwanted” and could understand how that felt.
“It’s only because of the Abortion Survivors Network that I’m doing as well as I am,” said Lamont, “because of all the support and healing that I’ve gotten through that organization.” He went through the group’s healing program and speaker program. “Now my goal is to inspire as many people as I can, even the people that are not abortion survivors. I think my purpose in life is to be an encouragement to my fellow abortion survivors and everyone I come in contact with.”
Abortion does not prevent child abuse
Child abuse is a common justification made by abortion advocates for legalized, unrestricted abortion. In reality, legalized abortion did nothing to end child abuse, and in fact, violence against children has only dramatically increased.
Since 1973, the number of child abuse and neglect cases has risen from 167,000 annually to over 600,000. Nearly 4 million children received an investigation or alternative response from child protective services agencies in 2020, according to the National Childhood Alliance. In 2001, the Washington Post reported that the “rate of killing for infants before their first birth[day] rose from 7.2/100,000 to 8.7/100,000 between 1983-1991. It continued to rise thereafter, reaching 9.1/100,000 in 2000.” Death by homicide was the only leading cause of death in children to rise during this time period.
While abortion supporters may see Lamont as a case of an unwanted child suffering abuse that could have been avoided if his mother had been allowed access to abortion, Lamont is happy to be alive, happy to be married to his wife of 29 years, and happy to be a father to three men who are making their own positive impact on the world.
He worked as a Certified Nurses Assistant for years and now drives a school bus and does woodwork. Every morning when he picks up the children on his bus route, he asks them, “Are you ready for a new day?” and provides them with encouragement.
Gratitude for life
“I have tremendous gratitude for being alive,” he explained. “We are all basically unplanned. … The saying ‘unwanted’ because a child is unplanned is disgusting to me because if the child was unplanned, it’s still a child. That life is there. They should be afforded every bit of love and acceptance into the family. Whether they are planned or unplanned, they have the right to life and right to experience life just like everyone else.”
He added, “If the abortion had been successful, I’d be dead and gone, and yes, I did suffer much trauma in my childhood. But looking back, it did help to make me a better man, and I could be understanding to those that are traumatized in any area of their life and I could reach out and be an understanding heart for others who have been through trauma and sympathize with them.”
Lamont says that he can help others who have been through similar experiences to see that life is worth living and that they can use their trauma to make themselves “better, not bitter.”
As for his parents, “By God’s grace, I have forgiven my mom and dad,” said Lamont. “Unfortunately, they passed away so I couldn’t tell them, but I have forgiven them.”
A couple of weeks before his father passed away, his father said, “Willard was the only one that loved me.” This, explained Lamont, was because in his father’s final weeks of life, as he refused chemotherapy treatments, Lamont supported him.
Lamont firmly believes that God saved his life while he was in his mother’s womb, and that God continued to save his life for a reason. At age 11, he was struck by a car and suffered a skull fracture, five broken ribs, and a punctured lung. He wasn’t supposed to survive. But he did.
Shortly after graduating from high school, he was diagnosed with acute lymphocytic leukemia. He was in the hospital for weeks of chemotherapy, developed a severe infection, and was not supposed to survive through the night. But again, he survived.
In his spoken testimony, Lamont states of his brushes with death from even before he was born: “… God said, ‘This boy is mine and I have plans for him! I have a new day in store for him!”
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