HOUSTON – A Texas mother of five whose law school graduation photos went viral crossed stage this weekend.
Ieshia Champs, 33, graduated from Texas Southern University's Thurgood Marshall School of Law on Friday. The viral graduation photos that feature Champs' five children are just part of her story of triumph.
According to ABC News, Champs lost her job, lost all of her belongings in a house fire and lost the father of two of her kids to cancer. At one point, things seemed hopeless for Champs. She said she tried to take her own life.
Champs said a pastor at her church turned her life around with a simple, yet loaded, message.
"God told me to tell you that you need to go back to school to get your GED because that lawyer that you want to be, you're going to be it," Champs said her pastor told her.
Champs earned her GED degree and an associate degree from Houston Community College according to the Houston ABC affiliate. She then earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Houston before going to Thurgood Marshall School of Law.
Of course, raising five children while going to law school was no easy task for Champs. Her oldest son told ABC News he would sometimes hear his mother crying from stress and so he stepped up, making meals for his siblings and doing other chores so his mother could focus on her studies.
Champs' children began helping in her studies by assisting her with flash cards and serving as a mock jury.
The faith-driven mother of five told ABC News the viral graduation photos are a picture of someone who knew the odds were stacked against her, but who destroyed them.