A poor emigrant had gone to Australia to “make his fortune,” leaving a wife and little son in England. When he had made some money, he wrote home to his wife:
“Come out to me here; I send the money for your passage; I want to see you and my boy.”
The wife took ship as soon as she could, and started for her new home. One night, as they were all asleep, there sounded the dreaded cry of, "Fire, fire! “ Every one rushed on deck, and the boats were soon filled. The last one was just pushing off, when a cry of, “There are two more on deck,” arose.
“They were the mother and her son. Alas! “Only room for one,” the sailors shouted. Which was to go? The mother thought of her far-away home, her husband looking out lovingly and longingly for his wife. Then she glanced down at the boy, clinging, frightened, to her skirts. She could not let him die. There was no time to lose.
Quick! Quick! The flames were getting round. Snatching the child, she held him to her a moment. “Willie, tell father I died for you! Then the boy was lowered into the sailors’ willing arms. She died for him.
Touching Incidents and Remarkable Answers to Prayer - 1893