Hallie Highfield McCrory Casey McCrory Bryce Pumpkin Patch October 2021

Lasting Relationships Found at Big Oak Ranch

Miracle Moments


Brought to you by: Molly Maid of Birmingham, www.mollymaid.com/birmingham

“But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.” Genesis 50:20 

Certain things stand out to me when I think about my childhood. I remember drugs being in my parents’ home. I remember missing a lot of school. My family seemed to be in court a lot. I didn’t really see my dad much. I remember a phone call my mom had one day. At the time, I wasn’t sure who she was talking to or who she was talking about, but I remember her saying, “I can’t deal with them anymore.” It wasn’t long before my brother and I were taken to an extended family member, and we never lived with our parents again. This path eventually brought me to Big Oak Ranch. 

Hallie in 7th grade
Seen here is Hallie in 7th grade during her time at Big Oak Ranch.

During my first week at the Ranch, I met with Mr. John and Mrs. Mary. At first, I thought Mr. John was scary, but I soon realized he was just really tall and had a deep voice. He told me the Four Promises [We love you. We will never lie to you. We will stick with you. There are boundaries.], and I still remember them to this day. I also remember thinking, “That is what everybody says.” But the longer I was there, I realized these people really stick with and keep those Four Promises. I saw something different in my houseparents. They didn’t fight like the other adults in my life. Mom would get us all together in a circle and pray with us. We had fun family outings. But I had a bad attitude. At the time, at that younger age, I couldn’t see the good. This affected my time at the Ranch and looking back I regret that so much. When I lived at the Ranch, I thought they were just there to do whatever children needed for that particular day and time. After I left, I didn’t think anyone at Big Oak still cared about me. 

Hallie with husband kids and parents
Hallie and her family celebrating the Christmas season with Mom and Dad Thomas.

In 2019, I married my best friend, Casey. We have two wonderful boys – Cooper and Bryce. Five years ago, I was able to reconnect with my houseparents, and their actions showed that they did still love and care about me. Now my husband and I love to visit our family at the Ranch.  Everybody who serves at Big Oak is making a difference and helping change children’s lives, even when they are hard to deal with like I was. I see younger girls, living with my houseparents, and it makes me happy. They are my house sisters, and I know they are safe, they are getting what they need, and they are loved – just like me! 

-Hallie McCrory


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