Taking Care of Each Other
Randy Evans has a servant’s heart. He has spent years volunteering all over the state with the North Carolina Baptist Men and with his church in his hometown of Madison, North Carolina. In April of 2022, Randy experienced debilitating back pain. His doctors discovered a tumor on his spine as a result of both melanoma and lymphoma, and they sent him to Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist Comprehensive Cancer Center in Winston-Salem for daily stem cell treatments. Driving back and forth from Madison every day was not an option for Randy, and his healthcare team referred him to the SECU Family House so he could stay close to the hospital.
On December 27th, Randy started stem cell treatments. He needed a caregiver to be with him 24/7, but his family could not take weeks off work to stay in Winston-Salem with him around the clock. Randy’s church family heard the call to take care of one of their flock. Randy’s good friend Steven, a retired health care worker, created a sign-up for church members to take 24-hour shifts in Winston-Salem, going with him to the hospital and staying at the SECU Family House. Over the next three weeks, Randy appreciated the support of ten different caregivers from two separate churches.
During the days, Randy and his caregivers spent time at the hospital while he received treatments and went through tests. In the evenings, they ate dinners together, played BINGO, and enjoyed snuggling with therapy dogs. Each morning, Randy and his current caregiver would update the next caregiver about the past 24 hours and what the next day’s schedule would look like at the hospital and at the Family House. It was a beautiful example of community members coming together to help their friend in need.
Randy is now back home in Madison, and he is doing well. He will be isolated for three months while his new immune system adjusts to the world. Randy is thankful for the Family House and for his church family that pulled together to help him be reborn, both in body and spirit.