The Mother Who Bore And brought Up a Hero
The woman, who bore and brought up a hero such as Hadrat Abbas (SA), the standard-bearer to Imam Hussein (AS), was Umm-al-Banin (SA). She was the daughter of Hazam ibn Khali and wife of Imam Ali (AS). She was from the courageous family of Bani Kalab.
Aquil arranged the marriage. Her maiden name was Fatima, but when she bore Imam Ali four sons — Abbas, Abdullah, Jafar and Uthman — she was called Umm-al-Banin (i.e., mother of sons only).
Her sons put up a grand fight in the Battle of Karbala. They fought with bravery and devotion and were all martyred on the Day of Ashura.
It has been narrated that Hadrat Abbas (Abulfazl) allowed his brothers to go to the battlefield before he did, thereby suffering bereavement. He went to his brother, Imam Hussein (AS), begging his permission to fight. The Imam (AS) permitted him, but he decided that he should first bring water for the children, as they were all crying from the pangs of thirst.
He rode towards the river, but a group of enemies who were guarding the river shot arrows at him. He made a brave attack on them, killing as many as he could. Finally, one of the enemies dealt a hard fatal blow on his head. Imam Hussein (AS) lamented bitterly the martyrdom of his standard-bearer, saying that it crushed him completely.
When Bashir returned to Medina to bring the news of the martyrdom of Imam Hussein (AS) and all his companions, Umm-al-Banin was greatly overwhelmed with bereavement, not only of her sons, but more so of the loss of Imam Hussein (AS) to whom she was wholeheartedly devoted.
When the battle ended, Yazid ordered to take the survivors of Imam Hussein (AS) as prisoners of war to Sham in Syria. It has been narrated that the womenfolk did not allow their children to know what happened to their fathers. Among the children there was a three-year-old girl who awoke one night, asking for her father of whom she had dreamt. Yazid (The Cursed One), ordered the severed head of Imam Hussein (AS) to be shown to the girl. She was so frightened that she died some days later.