SPOKANE, Wash. -- In this story, you'll meet two people united in their deepest grief. On Sunday, we told you about a woman who recently had her car stolen. It was full of donations she was going to distribute the next day. She was left feeling helpless until a man from her past decided to pay it forward.
"27 years," said Randy Shillam. "27 happy years."
That's it. That's all Randy got with his beloved wife Judy. They shared a story book love that began with an ordinary night out.
"I went with a friend, she went with a friend," he said. "We met and it was like this is it. I knew right away. I think she did too."
Life was good, so, so good. It was the kind of love many spend forever searching for.
"I hope everyone can (find this kind of love), at least once," he said.
Randy and Judy were blissfully growing old together until that horrible October night.
"It happened in the middle of the night," he said. "I went to bed and then heard a loud thump."
It was Judy. Just as quickly as she came into his life all those sweet years ago, she was leaving.
"It was a brain aneurysm actually," he said. "It took her away from us."
The family had no idea she was sick. They never saw it coming, but just a few days after Judy was admitted to the hospital, Randy says God called her up. A period of time that was so painful, so much of it was a blur. But there's one thing, one face, the family can't forget.
"It was pure hell," he said. "But this young girl, brightened my spirits. She'd smile, give me hugs, telling me it was going to be okay."
He later learned she was the secretary for the Intensive Care Unit.
"It meant the world to me," he said.
It's been 14 months since Judy passed. Randy hasn't forgotten about the kindness of that secretary.
"(I've thought about her) a few times, yes wondered how do I get a hold of her, then it goes away," he said
Until, Sunday night. KHQ's Hayley Guenthner presented her latest "Help Me Hayley" report. A North Spokane mother had her car stolen while it was parked in front of her home. She was crushed. As soon as he heard her speak, he knew it was the woman who had provided so much comfort to him at the ICU.
"Then, it came on the news, her picture came up and I said I know that girl, that's Carrie," he said. "I said I know how to fix this, Hello Hayley."
He wrote Hayley a message. He said he felt compelled to give back to the woman who had given him so much. Carrie was left absolutely shocked when Hayley gave him a check made out to her from Randy, for $2,000.
She was left speechless.
"I answer the phones, I let people in," she said. "I'm so touched he remembered me."
Randy just hopes he gave her just a sliver of the compassion she showed him during that awful time.
Carrie hopes to use the money to possible purchase a new car. She also will put some toward continuing to give back to the community.