Serving Others in Many Ways
Raised in a strong military family, Evan has always focused on community and civic service as a major part of his life. While living in Virginia during elementary school, he asked classmates who attended his birthday parties to not bring gifts, but rather donations which could be presented to local non-profits, including the United Services Organization (USO), the relief fund for Hurricane Katrina victims, and the Semper Fi Wounded Marine fund. In sixth grade, he led a donation campaign to collect shoes and school supplies for Afghan children in Kabul, Afghanistan, which his father, who was serving in Afghanistan, personally delivered.
Evan has performed with his violin for more than 90,000 people since he began his musical outreach efforts at age 12. While attending Christ the King Catholic School in Tampa, Florida as a fifth grader, he played for a variety of charitable and non-profit functions as part of a small strings group. By sixth grade, he was performing for weekly mass at the Our Lady by the Bay chapel on MacDill Air Force Base as a way to regularly serve his religious community.
Bringing joy and peace to others through his music inspired his musical engagement campaign. At age 12, after his grandmother suffered a debilitating stroke, Evan began to play for her in an assisted living facility, and he saw how it lifted not only her spirits, but the spirts of other patients around her. Playing for the elderly and disabled grew into a musical campaign that touches thousands annually.
In eighth grade, Evan developed a bluegrass version of the national anthem, and had opportunity that year to play it at the AAU Junior Olympic Games in Houston, and at a Tampa Bay Rays – Texas Rangers Major League baseball game. Playing the anthem added another level to his public performances, and enabled him to reach thousands at a time.
When Evan’s parents moved to Arizona in summer 2014 after his father’s military retirement, Evan began performing for residents at Phoenix assisted living facilities and at weekly mass at St. Thomas the Apostle church even before his parents had found a place to live. Shortly thereafter, he became the youngest Arizona musician performing with Musicians on Call for child cancer patients at the Phoenix Children’s Hospital.
Evan’s community outreach through music has generated far more requests to play than he can accommodate. In addition to performing hundreds of volunteer hours at his church and senior facilities, he also performed the national anthem multiple times in large public venues, including four times for Major League baseball, at the Phoenix Veterans Day Parade, Veterans Day ceremonies, and functions for the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame, the Marine Corps Scholarship Foundation, the Arizona chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen, and at a presidential campaign rally.
Awarded the Presidential Volunteer Service Award twice, Evan’s volunteerism grew throughout high school, and as a senior in high school, he was recognized as the 2017 City of Phoenix Outstanding Young Man of the Year . His volunteerism has continued into college with Musicians on Call, as well as serving as a tutor for middle school and high school students in Providence, RI.