On every Monday for the last 30 years, Phil Ikehorn has sent his wife Evelyn a lovely red rose. That’s more than 1,500 roses since they wed on March 7, 1987.
And on Valentine’s Day, the hopeless romantic ups the ante. For a number of years, he has sent her one dozen roses for each year they’ve been married. Evelyn is not yet sure if she’ll receive a whopping 360 roses today, but her husband has told her “something” special is coming.
“The first year they came it was quite a surprise,” Evelyn, 72, told ABC News of the sentimental roses from her real-life cupid. “It was delivered by FedEx and we had these long stem roses all over the place and I had to find these vases and buckets to put them in. There were so many I had to ask him not to do it. I said, ‘Just send me one rose for each year.’”
But of course Phil, 71, didn’t heed her advice.
“This year he’s also ordered Cheryl’s cookies in heart shapes. And then he knows I love popcorn, so he ordered three different types of popcorn in a big tub from the Popcorn Factory,” she explained. “This was in the last couple weeks. And sometimes candy. From his email, he sends me an inspirational thing each day. He used to send me cards on Fridays. He’s very thoughtful in that way.
It’s safe to say Phil spoils his beloved wife, which Evelyn said makes her “feel special.”
Evelyn has three daughters from a previous marriage, and when she first started dating Phil in the 1980s, she wasn’t accustomed to this kind of attention.
“It’s really special,” she said. “It’s just something I had not been used to — that kind of attention. It made me feel special and I said, ‘Wow, this is really, really, really nice.’ I must be special to him.”
He’s been proving just how special she is every Monday since with a sweet delivery to her doorstep or office, which often drew attention from her former colleagues.
“I started to look forward to it each week,” she said. “When it started coming to my job and other people were noticing, some of the men there said, ‘Don’t tell my wife about this.’”
Both Phil and Evelyn are retired now and, for the most part, are home each Monday for the special delivery.
“We deliver it every Monday before noon,” Michelle Butler, manager of Connells Maple Lee Flowers & Gifts, said of the couple’s standing order. “We have three drivers and they all rotate and know her well. It’s once in a rare moon when she’s not home and they come back worried that she wasn’t home. She’s just a sweetheart. All of my drivers say they’re a super sweet, wonderful people.”
The love the Ikehorns share is very much a two-way street. Phil had a stroke in July and is undergoing therapy, and Evelyn is right there by his side taking him to the gym in the mornings to help him regain his strength.
“He’s going through therapy and of course he likes to go to the gym and that adds strength to his body,” she said. “I get up in the morning and take him to the gym. I’m there with him to make sure his balance is OK. He’s doing well. He’s progressed quite well.”
The lovebirds are looking forward to sharing a delicious Valentine’s meal at a “nice restaurant” tonight, another gesture Phil always does to treat Evelyn on this romantic day.