50.31. A fan of Nora Roberts. Meet Kevin.

kevin

Nora [Roberts], that’s my girl.

-Kevin Smith

It is impossible not to like Kevin Smith.  He is happy.  He is extremely friendly.  He is open.  He is honest.  After all, how many 50 year old men living in north Omaha would proudly declare his love for a romance novelist?

Kevin makes friends easily.  I have known Kevin for six months.  During this time, I have seen Kevin give countless hugs.  I have watched as Kevin does not just say hello or ask how you are doing but always stop to engage in a conversation.  I have witnessed him spend time with a lonely grandmother and comfort a single mother afraid of how she is going to feed her children.  Kevin truly is the dedicated volunteer that always puts others first.  I have talked with multiple staff members about how Kevin embodies everything special about the Center.  Admittedly, I have wondered if Kevin is too good to be true.

At breakfast, I find out there is much more to Kevin.  His normally upbeat demeanor changes abruptly as he retells the story of finding out his sister died roughly 15 years ago.  He talks about how difficult her death is for him and that a piece of him died with her.  We talk about his mother.  Kevin mentions that he has not seen his mother for “awhile now” despite her living one block away.  He says that he wants to first get a job so she will be proud of him when they see each other next.

Kevin desperately wants a job.  Kevin has applied for multiple jobs at restaurants and is waiting to hear back about whether he will be hired.  Any company would be lucky to have an employee like Kevin.  He is hard working, loyal, and caring.   Similarly, the Heart Ministry Center is lucky to have such a dedicated, friendly volunteer.  In the short time I have known Kevin, he has become much more than just a volunteer but one of the people I respect most in this world.  Kevin has become not just a great volunteer but someone I feel blessed to call my friend… even if he does like Nora Roberts.

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