(3TV/CBS 5) − Everyone has a story. But when Arizona’s Family Surprise Squad honored a request to buy a grandmother a new pair of glasses, the humble woman revealed a compelling story of bravery.
“My mom’s been the only parent in my life,” said Eva’s daughter Michelle. “My mom's pretty much the glue that keeps me and my daughter and everyone else happy. She’s the type of person that [sic] likes to give you anything, even the clothes off her back. She’s been wanting to get new glasses. It’s difficult when you know, just living paycheck to paycheck.”
“What do you say we go surprise her?” said Good Morning Arizona’s Tess Rafols.
“Yes!” said Michelle.
“Alright, let’s go!” said Rafols.
Arizona’s Family Surprise Squad went to the family’s home, where Michelle called to her mother through the screen door.
“Hey, Mom! I have a surprise for you!” said Michelle.
Eva came to the door and stepped outside.
“Surprise!” said Rafols. “Hi, I’m Tess!”
“Yes, I know,” said Eva.
“I’m with Arizona’s Family,” said Rafols. “How are you?”
“Good,” said Eva. “How are you?”
“Good,” said Rafols. “How are your glasses feeling these days?”
“Not so good,” said Eva.
“Not so good,” said Rafols. “We heard you could maybe use a new pair.”
“Oh, this is falling apart,” Eva said touching her frames. “This is about 15 years old.”
“Fifteen years old!” said Rafols.
“Probably,” said Eva.
“What do you say?” said Rafols. “Want to go for a little drive?”
“Thank you,” said Eva softly as she reached out to hug Rafols.
Arizona’s Family Surprise Squad took Eva to Peoria Eye Care where she got a complete eye exam from Tara Ransdell, O.D. and picked out new frames. Before leaving, Rafols had another surprise for Eva.
“Alright, Eva,” said Rafols. “How do you feel?”
“This is a wonderful surprise,” said Eva. “Thank you so much.”
“We’re not done yet,” said Rafols. “Valley Toyota Dealers want to help you just feel better, look better, so we’re going to take you to the salon right now.”
“Thank you so much!” said Eva.
Rafols took Eva to Royal Salon where hair stylist Rita gave Eva a fresh look, shaping and coloring her hair.
Before giving Eva one final surprise, Rafols asked Eva about her background.
“You’re from Hungary,” said Rafols. “How did you end up coming to the United States?”
“It was communist at that time and that’s the reason I left,” said Eva. “A friend of mine I came with, her uncle lived in Alaska and he’s the one that helped us escape. I was terrified. I am very happy, very grateful. This is my home. If I had to do it over again, I don’t know if I would have the nerves.”
“Your Valley Toyota Dealers and Arizona’s Family has one more little surprise,” said Rafols, handing Eva a small box.
Eva smiled when she read the outside of the box and held it up to the camera.
“No place like home,” said Eva.
Then she opened it revealing $500. She gasped and shook her head.
“Thanks,” said Eva, so overcome with emotion she could hardly speak.
Arizona’s Family Surprise Squad is sponsored by your Valley Toyota Dealers.