In 1989, Rebecca Evans, of Lindale, was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver and told she may only have a few more months to live.

Mrs. Evans said the diagnosis was hard to come to terms with, but she credits her faith and family for sustaining her. 

"God does work, and he works in wonderful miracles," Mrs. Evans said.

About 28 years after the diagnosis, Mrs. Evans, now 59, has since had another child - who is in his 20s - and relishes talking about how smart and creative her grandchildren are.

On Tuesday morning, Mrs. Evans shared her story with a few staff members of local Christian radio stations 89.5 KVNE and 91.3 KGLY. The group visited her room at East Texas Medical Center, delivering her Valentine's Day cards as part of the stations' annual visits to local hospitals, assisted living facilities and other locations throughout the community.

Mrs. Evans' colorful bag of handmade cards featured sunshine, flowers, hearts, bears and more. She enjoyed interacting with members of the stations while viewing each card - getting a special amount of enjoyment from the ones that she could tell were made by children.

"I'll keep these forever," Mrs. Evans said. "They'll go in my keepsake box."

This year 21,000 Valentines were collected at 22 locations in East Texas - enough for each recipient to receive multiple cards. The handmade Valentine's Day cards were made by members of many different church groups, businesses, organizations and individuals from throughout the community.

Jill Smith, director of community connections with the stations, said delivering the cards is very rewarding and that staff and volunteers with the stations enjoy being able to show love and support to those in need.

"We love to bless the people we deliver the Valentines to," Parsons said. "The (cards) carry the message of God's love."

 

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