Clara McBride Hale and Her Neverending Family

By Ruby Cemental

Selfless people—truly selfless people—are a rare commodity in this world. And those selfless individuals who devote their lives to the betterment of underprivileged children are even more rare. That's why Clara McBride Hale was so special.

Early Life

Clara McBride Hale was born in 1905, and as a child suffered some tragedy of her own. Her father died when she was very young, after which her mother needed to take in lodgers to support her four children; and when she was 16, her mother died, leaving her completely orphaned.

Later, Clara married Thomas Hale, had 3 children, and, after being married for only 3 years, had to endure her husband dying of cancer, leaving the young widow with children to support. It's likely that these misfortunes led, at least in part, to her compassion with addicted children. 

Caring for Others

After her husband's death, she opened their home for childcare, whereupon the children grew attached to her, and she to them. During her life, Hale raised so many children as her own that the size of her natural family isn't entirely certain. Later in life, she founded the Hale House—a home for children born to addiction—almost accidentally, as a young and drug-addicted mother came to her for help with a child that she was unable to care for due to her intoxication.

At the age of 64, Hale and her family slowly began settling in to a life of keeping sickly and premature babies, many of whom became addicted to heroin and other drugs while still in the womb, and nursing them to health.


Hale was honored many times during her later years, by presidents and supreme courts, in magazines and books, but she always brought the attention back to the kids. "Mother Hale," as she was known to many, was a bastion of insurmountable love for suffering children and their families.

For 87 years, she lived a life of dedication and devotion to those who had nowhere to turn. And upon her death in 1992, she left behind a legacy that continues to live on through The Hale House, which remains in existence to provide unconditional love, care and understanding to children and families in need of support.     

For more information on seniors, their care, and those among them who have inspired and continue to, please contact us.

Refer Care for Patients and Family ButtonRuby Cemental Blog Author

Tags: Golden Inspirations

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