"The idea of people eating my food, it makes me feel good inside." Evelyn Brashier has been cooking for 40 years. "Since I was ten. I'm serious," she laughed. Evelyn cooks for the homeless at the Salvation Army. She says it's her way of making a difference. "When you get in a situation where you can't be responsible for yourself and take care of your personal needs, you don't feel too good." It's a feeling Evelyn knows. "I wouldn't wish that on my worst enemy, being homeless."
In 1998 Evelyn was a restaurant manager. "Oh, I was making $40,000, had a nice home, nice car. I had a heart attack and the company that I was working for, which will remain nameless, their insurance wouldn't cover me. So I was just out," Evelyn said.
Evelyn lost just about everything. She soon found herself sleeping at the Salvation Army's shelter in Lubbock, for almost three months. "When you lay down at night and you don't know if this is the last night that you're gong to have a warm place to stay, you don't know if you're going to have something to eat tomorrow, unless you go take it or something. That's awful."
In Evelyn, the emotional pain dug deep. "You feel like everybody's looking down on you. You're not pulling your share of the load. I felt sorry for myself."
But Evelyn would find salvation. "And they had a cook and they needed a cook and I decided that you know, maybe I could to this."
Since then, Evelyn has gotten back on her feet and she now has her own place. "Just because you're making $100,000 today, it don't mean you'll be making it tomorrow. Once it happens to you, it will change your whole perspective. It did mine. It made me a better person."
Evelyn's head chef for the Thanksgiving Dinner at the Salvation Army Thursday. It's at 17th and Avenue J from 3:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. It's free and everyone is invited.