Hearing how powerful Candi Daniel's voice is when she sings, you would never guess got most of her life she felt she didn't have a voice.
"There were a lot of red flags I ignored because I was in love," Candi said, referring to her former marriage.
Candi married at 21 years old to the man she thought was the love of her life.
"After it became apparent there were some issues going on in our marriage, he said we'll renew our vows come out to California," Candi said.
In 2012, Candi and her four kids were dragged from Alabama to California, from a giant home to an RV. The abuse had started shortly after her marriage in 1991, but it took nearly 25 years for Candi to finally file for divorce.
"That's when he threatened me and said he could make my death look like an accident," Candi said.
Death threats, stalking and physical abuse somehow were just a small part of it. Candi said her ex-husband's temper was so bad, he would start fights over a pizza or a blanket pulling hair off his arm. He often beat her in front of her children.
Candi is also facing debt and bad credit for his mistakes. He often opened accounts and took out loans using her social security number, something she didn't learn until recently. But she said her biggest regret of all was not understanding the difference between criminal law and family law.
"They need their mother. You know it's that part is almost, it's almost enough to just kill you," said Candi. "It just hurts so much."
Jurisdiction issues between the two states and legal confusion cost Candi the custody of her 3 youngest kids. For her, that's been the hardest part of this living nightmare.
"If you don't understand how to navigate that by yourself, you're gonna lose," said Candi.
For the past few weeks, Candi has found a safe haven in My Sister's House, a non-profit that helps domestic abuse survivors and victims of sexual assault or trafficking.
She and her oldest child, Savannah, have been getting help from them - a place to live and education on the systems that once took everything from her. She hopes to one day have her other children back.
Candi and Savannah will be singing at ABC10's "Make A Difference Day" event this Saturday. You can help families like them by signing up here.
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