Adoptive Family Wins 2007 Best Adult Non Fiction by The Mom's Choice Awards - Tiny Titan by Ann Yurcek

Share Article

An extraordinary story of how the power of one tiny child changes the lives of thousands. The Yurceks beat the odds of poverty, despair, unemployment, medical and mental health crisis. They not only survive they triumph. A true story of hope and inspiration.

Life for the Yurcek's has never been easy and three years ago they faced a crossroad. Yurcek was "just" a mom. But "just a mom" with a story to tell, the mom of a once simple American family. Many encouraged her to write, yet with 11 children, several with special needs, who could find time to write a 470-page memoir?

Ann Yurcek pulled out her journals and paper snippets to finally write "that book!"

"I was called to write our story to educate, inspire, and offer hope," wrote Yurcek and she started by "just beginning".

Tiny Titan ( is filled with miracles and challenges the Yurcek's face when their youngest daughter is born with a severe Noonan's Syndrome and they tumble into catastrophic illness. With five other children and a critically ill baby the family beats the odds of families in crisis, they unite and teeny-tiny Becca survives as a medical miracle.

Families of children who are critically ill or severely challenged statistically face isolation, hopelessness, divorce, family disruption, bankruptcy and depression. Yurcek vowed to keep the family intact and through job losses, poverty, and adversity the family was not broken. They were strengthened. Faced with a million dollars in medical bills and poverty, Ann encouraged her husband to return to school. They delivered newspapers, took out student loans and accepted help from others. Mr. Yurcek became Dr. James Yurcek, a surgeon. At 18, Becca's congenital heart defects, medical fragility and autism have not prevented her from becoming the manager of the Lancaster High School football team and cheerleader squads.

In return for the graciousness of others, the Yurcek's reunited five America's waiting children siblings who had been separated by the foster care system. Their journey in the health intensive care and medical arena was filled with twists and turns, but was nothing compared to the maze they walk through in the mental health and child welfare system.

Yurcek has become a force to reckon with in children's mental health and disability awareness. A mighty mother warrior who began quiet and shy, she now tackles issues in local, state and national systems. "When it comes to my children, I will fight for them when they cannot fight for themselves. If they make a mistake I let them learn from it as they grow from life experience, but sometimes events take an advocate and then they know I am in their corner. I worry for the thousands of young people who struggle like my children and who don't have an advocate.

Yurcek states, "My fight for the life of tiny Becca prepared me to fight for my other five children. Becca's physical issues are visible to the public, whereas our new children have invisible disabilities - brain injury, attachment issues, sensory issues, post traumatic stress from abuse and neglect, mental health complexities, fetal alcohol spectrum disorders. The community cannot see their internal struggles and some are more debilitating than Becca's for quality of adult life."

The mission of the Mom's Choice Awards (MCA) is to recognize authors, inventors, companies, parents and others for their efforts to create quality family-friendly media, products and services.

"Can you believe it?" said Yurcek, "Recipient of Best Adult Non-Fiction of Mom's Choice Award and Finalist in Your Heart Our Hands for philanthropic spirit." The family continues to pay the generosity others gave them forward. "When you've been at the bottom, choosing not to eat so your children are fed, you know how important a hand up can be." The Yurcek family founded the award winning Backpacks for Kids program in Kalamazoo, Michigan and collected and delivered over 4,500 filled backpacks to school children. Their project was featured in People Magazine.

"Tiny Titan by Ann Yurcek has brought tears and smiles, hope and laughter. It encourages all who read it. Their story is so complex it sounds fictional, but Yurcek had arm loads of data to prove every bit was true. And she fought for her story with the same tenacity she fought for medical and mental health to provision her children. It was crucial to her that the whole story - three complete separate stories remain intact. It was vital that it was written in "just a mom" vernacular and script. It was pertinent that no embellishment of truth happen," said publisher Better Endings New Beginnings. "Congratulations Yurcek family you represent America at its best. We're glad we resisted all those edits and you stuck to your strategy - telling the public the whole story in your own language."

"Instead of reading the most recent fiction novel to fill your spare time with unbelievable characters, plot twists and outrageous emotions, read this novel that will provide you with the same feelings with one twist, it is true. I did not know what to expect from this book, but what I was given was amazing. I have never felt more attached to a story and the people that told it. With each turn of the page, I realized how inspirational it was. The obstacles that the Yurcek family faced are obstacles I could not begin to understand, and their ability to overcome made me realize how truly strong people can be. I would recommend this book to anyone, and in fact it has already been passed through my circle of friends. If you are facing hardship or would just like to be inspired by truth and strength of spirit, Tiny Titan is a wonderful choice." writes Jennifer Manogue on

"We're delighted with the outstanding works represented in this very special group of recipients," said Tara Peterson, founder of the Mom's Choice Awards ( Recipients are profiled in a special limited edition of Entro produced exclusively for the Mom's Choice Awards. The publication and Tiny Titan is available online at Visit to learn more about the Yurceks.

# # #

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author


Ann Yurcek
Visit website