BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – Apostle Wanda Stephen of Jesus Real Ministry is on a mission to find the mothers of three children who died in Birmingham in a little more than a week. Two of the children died violently after being left with someone other than the mother–the third child passed away after being left by a relative in a hot car on a college campus.
“Three babies got killed,” said Stephen. “Three. When children like that get killed it devastates me–because I know. I lost my son some years ago.”
Stephen is the founder of the group, Mothers Who Want the Violence to Stop. She started the group after her son, George Powell Jr., was killed in 2006 in Roosevelt City.
“I put up billboard signs,” she explained. “I give out those cards. I get on the streets. I do vigils. I do eulogies and rallies, because when my son died, I decided to turn my tragedy into triumph.”
Powell’s murder is still unsolved. Many of Stephen’s billboards and cards also feature cold cases. “I reach out to just about everybody when they lose somebody to gun violence,” Stephen explained. “I’m only one person, but I try to reach out to everybody–so I will reach out to them [the mothers]. I do it all the time.”
We followed Stephen to one of the neighborhoods where a child had been killed. She wasn’t able to locate the mother on that day, but said that she would keep trying. She hopes to host a vigil for the children.
“I know the feeling,” she said. “I know the feeling and my heart goes out to them.”