SHAWNEE, Okla. - Debbie Manuel of Shawnee was in the darkest place in her life when she attempted suicide.
She thought that when she opened her eyes again she would be in heaven.
"When I woke up and heard her, I honestly thought ‘this is an angel.’”
And Debbie still thinks that about her new friend and hero Andrea Jones.
Andrea is an ICU nurse at Saint Anthony Hospital in Shawnee.
Debbie was discovered unconscious and was rushed to St. Anthony and Andrea’s was the first voice Debbie heard.
Andrea has not only helped her heal physically, but Andrea has also taken Debbie under her wing and is helping her overcome her emotional challenges…and more importantly, has made her spiritually aware.
"She turned my life around," Debbie says. “She spoke to me about the Lord, and that there was a purpose for me and every day that goes by I find that there is a purpose for me."
Debbie nominated Andrea for First Fidelity Bank’s Pay It Forward award.
We received the $400 from First Fidelity Bank’s Michelle Jensen and a tearful Debbie surprised Andrea with the cash at the hospital.
An equally tearful Andrea told Debbie, “Keep listening to what God tells you… girl, he's going to carry you through everything."
Andrea’s husband Jerry and stepson Marshall agree Andrea deserves the praise.
"She's a wonderful woman,” Jerry says. “I couldn't ask for a better wife."
"She's a good step-mom too," Marshall told us. “The best I could ever ask for."
Andrea just says she's on a heavenly mission.
“I’m telling you, God brought me out of some bad places, and he brought me to love people more than I ever have before."
For Debbie Manuel, it's easy to sum up her new friend Andrea Jones: "She is an angel sent from heaven.”
Pay It Forward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.