For Deborah Taylor that one audio file suddenly became the most important thing in the world. It contained one of the final messages which her husband, who died from cancer in 2015, sent as a voicemail. He was driving back home from ambulance duty and couldn't turn the phone off because of Bluetooth. The voicemail documented his comic struggle with the phone. Deborah would listen to that audio file every night to relive his memories.
Hank suddenly died 18 months ago
It was in 2015 when Hank got splinters on his back while trying to drag a cooler across the beach. What Deborah thought as a typical problem old people face with their spine, actually turned out to be small cell lung carcinoma.
Hank helped Deborah with her own cancer
When Deborah developed breast cancer in 2011, it was Hank that helped her battle the disease with lustrous confidence. But little did the couple know that Hank's spine was home to a debilitating disease which would later take his life.
Deborah begged her husband to get a CT scan
Hank was a prolific chain smoker and volunteering for ambulance duty didn't help his lungs much either. As a result he was exposed to toxic conditions on a regular basis. Fearing the worst, Deborah would often demand her husband to get a CT scan.
But the doctors refused on account of the expenses
Hanks never showed any tell tale signs of a person undergoing cancer, and so the doctor refused to let him undergo a CT scan because of how expensive it would have been. Little did they know that Hank had carcinoma.
Hank died a month later
One month after doctors diagnosed Hank with small cell lung carcinoma, he breathed his last moments in Deborah's arms. Something which was chalked up to back pain actually ended up taking Hank's life. Had the doctor detected the problem earlier, perhaps Hank would have lived for a few more years.
Deborah was devastated
A part of Deborah died along with Hank. She was dealing with breast cancer for a few years now and was emotionally unprepared to deal with Hank's demise. The only thing that gave her a tiny semblance of comfort was Hank's voicemail.
The voicemail comforted and condoled her, giving Deborah the ability to cope with Hank's loss. The voicemail comically documented Hank's chagrin with ambulance duty. He was supposed to return back home when they called him back for more ambulance duty.
So he reported the change to his wife
So Hank angrily turned around and notified his wife about the change of plans. "I love you. Talk to you later." But he couldn't turn the phone off because of Bluetooth, hilariously bursting out, "If I could get off the damn phone!"
Deborah would listen to it every night
It was to be one of the last voice mails from Hank. But perhaps the most beautiful part about it is how Hank confesses his love to her on the phone and then hangs up in a comical manner. It brings her to giggles whenever she listens to it.
They were married for 10 years
The couple was married to each other for over 10 years before Hank's sudden death in 2015. They were so much in love with each other and were basically conjoined together. Only death could separate them from each other. And it did.
She changed her cell phone carrier
When the 61 year old breast cancer survivor decided to change her cell phone carrier, she almost lost the voicemail forever. AT&T told her that she would have at least 2 to 3 hours to recover the voicemail before it was lost forever.
But a detour to a burger shop distracted her
She stopped at Sonic for a small meal and completely forgot about recovering the voicemail. "I thought I'm going to eat my burger so it doesn't get soggy and then record the message." But an hour and a half later, the message was already gone. 'The stupid burger!" exclaimed Deborah.
Her friends advised to contact AT&T
Deborah's friends advised her to get in touch with AT&T for help, but she knew that the representative was pretty clear about the lifespan of the voicemail. She couldn't blame anyone because it was nobody's fault really!
Her Facebook rant
Deborah decided to rant about losing the voicemail on Facebook. One of her friends reported the tragic story to a news channel host, prompting them to write a letter to AT&T. The cell phone carrier juggernaut quickly sprung into action.
AT&T decided to help the grieving widow
AT&T guided Deborah through the right steps to help her retrieve the voicemail and make a copy for herself. Deborah could not have been any happier. "I've always said God gives you a window for everything, so when you see that, take it."
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