Remarkable Women: April Barnes uses her talent to lift others

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(WJHL)- Our Remarkable Woman finalist April Barnes has had her career take many turns.

Through it all, she has always stuck to her beliefs.

No matter what challenges she has faced, she is compelled to bless others.

Her love of people, her faith, and her belief that serving others blesses both the giver and receiver make her a Remarkable Woman.

April remembers how she took a chance on a music career.

“Crazy thing… put together a CD and sent it to Nashville,” she laughs. “Who does that?”

April’s gamble worked. IN 2005, April signed a record deal and started hitting the airwaves soon after.

“Through my first single was Hero At Home so it was kind of like a ministry for me because I was able to love on all those military families because the song was about the wife, and while she is here and her husband is on the Front Line,” she remembers.

But April’s road hasn’t been easy.

“My father committed suicide when I was 17, I grew up in an alcoholic home, married way too young, and that was not a very healthy marriage, though I was able to get out of that,” she says.

Through the adversity, April made a bold move and put her career on hold to take care of her children.

“So, that’s kind of really what happened to my music career,” April said. “I had to kind of put everything on hold because my kids come first and God had other plans.”

While at home, she had the idea to provide gift bags to homeless veterans.

“I call the VA Medical Center,” she remembers. “And I’m like how many home-less veterans do you have? They’re like 300 and I’m like I’m never going get 300 bags, how am I going to do this. I got 900 that year, in my garage!”

Twelve years later, she and volunteers give away hundreds of bags each year to veterans. For April, after all this time, it’s still personal.

“I had a guy come up to me, and he had a bible and he was like thank you so much, I’ve never had one of these, I’m going to cherish this forever. That’s all they get,” she says. “Christmas isn’t complete until I get to hug their necks and give them a bag. It’s not me, it’s the community, they love the veterans.”

Now, happily married to Casey Barnes she calls “remarkable”, you can hear April more than you can see her. She is on the other side of the microphone as a morning show host on 97.3 LOVE FM.

“What I’m doing now, encouraging people and sharing Christ over the airwaves every single day is so much more rewarding than being on stage. It really really is,” she says.

She says her reward is a feeling of peace, that she is right where she needs to be.

“I know what it’s like to be so low, so God puts us in places and sometimes we question it,” she says. “But, there’s always a reason for everything.”

Remarkable Women of the Tri-Cities

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