Raising triplets, battling cancer: Jacksonville single mother fights on

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — They say a mother’s love knows no bounds.

That holds true for Elaine Haynes.

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She and her triplets Jeremiah, Joshua and Jeffrey have been through thick and thin together. They’ll be 19 years old next week.

“I never thought I would be still living to see this moment,” Haynes said. “I really didn’t.”

For nine years, Haynes has been battling blood cancer (multiple myeloma). She receives chemo treatments twice a week.

“The ride has had its ups and downs, but through the whole thing she’s always stayed a warrior and she’s always been strong,” Joshua said. “She’s always been there for us.”

Haynes has raised her three sons as a single mother, which she says has been far from easy.

“Just making her proud is the best thing that I can ever do to repay her for everything she’s done for me,” Jeffrey said.

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This strong mother says nothing will stop her from fighting for her family and herself.

“I never gave up on my kids,” Haynes said. “I may have had a little bit of problems and bumps in the road, but I never gave up on myself and I never gave up on them,” Haynes said.”

Her children shared how grateful they are for their mother, their hero.

“When I get older and I can supply for her -- it’s all going to be given back,” Joshua said.

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Haynes received her bachelor’s degree and went on to get to her master’s, but her cancer diagnosis put a pause in that plan.

She says she could not be prouder of her triplets, who are college students working toward their dreams.

“I’m just overjoyed,” Haynes said. “I get speechless at times. I’m just so proud. Words can’t explain.”

Jeremiah said he keeps his mother in mind when times get tough in college.

“When there’s stuff I think I can’t complete, I just think about her and how she’s always persevered to stay consistent throughout,” Jeremiah said.

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For Joshua, balancing football, school and making time for family can be a challenge, but he says he knows what matters most.

“If there’s a time, it’s going to be to my mom,” Joshua said. “Just everything she’s done over the course of my whole life -- not even just the last nine years old when she’s had cancer. She’s always been there.”

On this Mother’s Day, we asked Haynes about her message to those struggling to keep pushing.

“Never give up,” Haynes said. “Never give up. Pray. Never give up. Keep your faith. Just keep your faith in God. Never give up.”

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Her children shared something they value most about their mother.

“One thing I can take away from you is your strength in fighting,” Joshua said. “Despite it all, you’ve never given up on us.”

“No matter what I’ve done -- no matter how many times I’ve made you upset -- you’ve always been there,” Jeremiah said.

“I know I can call you at the end of the day,” Jeffrey said. “You’re my mom, and my best friend.”