Coast Family Finally Gets Much Needed Home - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

08/16/03

Coast Family Finally Gets Much Needed Home

Dinner at the new McDowell home is not your average dining experience.

"We have 26 at home. Their ages are from 3 to 19. And we have one dog two goats and five horses. And all of them eat," said father Drew McDowell.

And luckily, after three and a half years, they're eating in their new home - complete with 17 bedrooms, ten and half baths, an infinite amount of love, and more importantly, space.

"The other one was smaller than this one and it was kind of crowded. This one's not. It's better," said daughter Samantha McDowell.

The McDowells have only been in the home for about two weeks, but we couldn't resist a grand tour.

"The process started about 4 years ago or better with Dr. M. L. Dotson. Dr. Dotson used to be an ear, nose and throat specialist here on the coast, and when he met the family, he had a desire to help the children have a nice home, one with a lot of room and a place to run and play, and he's the one that got the ball rolling," said Drew McDowell.

The good doctor donated the land, and he, along with the Mississippi Homebuilders Association, as well as the generosity of the community, helped to make this dream a reality.

"It's been a long time coming but I think the Lord has really blessed us and it's wonderful to be here now, to be in a big house and to have all the room that we need and to be out here. It's just really a blessing," said mother Nancy McDowell.

The McDowells willingness to care for children in need started back in 1969. They say it's been an awesome ride, but even after raising 42 children including 1 of their own, there's always room for more.

"We might add some little boys and we have that room for them now. So we're hoping maybe, but you never know we just pray about it. If God opens a door then it happens and if they're meant to be here they come. And so that's the way it's worked for us," said Nancy McDowell.

Well, it seems like a good plan.

The McDowells are holding an open house on Saturday and Sunday for those who helped to make their dream home come true.

By Karla Redditte

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