We recently asked our viewers to nominate who they thought were the most remarkable women in the Panhandle.
We received so many incredible submissions and have narrowed it down to four.
This week, our final nominee is Tina Dean.
She is being recognized for encouraging others through her strong faith and her heart to help those in need.
One person who can testify to these qualities is her husband Tony.
“We’ve been married for six years,” said Tina. “We actually were childhood sweethearts and we got separated 35 years ago and we came back together.”
At the beginning of 2018, they faced one of their toughest trials.
Tony was having problems with his heart.
“The doctor comes in and he’s like, ‘well normal people 150 cc’s or however it’s measured around their heart — your husband has 8000, so he’s not going to make it — we have to get this fluid off his heart’,” Tina said.
The doctors told them Tony’s heart was failing.
“They didn’t know if he would even make it to a heart transplant, and he would have to get a transplant in the next year,” said Tina. “And that’s really where the faith kicks in.”
Tony and Tina are gospel singers, and they constantly tour the country to play their music.
They began sharing Tony’s journey and people across the world were praying for them.
Tina said those prayers made a miracle.
“The doctor was amazed — he said in all his years he had never seen a heart that was that dead and damaged repair itself,” Tina said. “He was back up to 25 to 30% — and I know that was God.”
Their strong faith would also guide them through another challenge.
The Deans moved to the Panhandle in the spring of 2018, months before Hurricane Michael hit on October 10.
“I’ll never forget, I was aggravated because we didn’t have internet for like days and you couldn’t contact anybody and the phones were all out,” she said. “Then we drove over across the bridge and it made me feel about this big because I was worried about internet and people were completely devastated.”
In the midst of the destruction, the Deans’ home was okay.
This motivated them to provide what they could for others who weren’t so fortunate.
“It wasn’t out of duty or responsibility,” she said. “It’s just because we love people — we want to do whatever we can to help anybody.”
They also collected donations from places across the southeast where they had performed their music before.
“We ended up bringing back thousands and thousands of dollars worth of stuff, and we set up in Callaway,” said Tina.
Now, her faith has become her mission.
She coordinated the Praise in Panama worship concert, which brought eight gospel groups to Panama City Beach in January.
“There’s such a yearning here — a desire for the anointing — so that’s why we wanted to bring it so people could be here, be apart and be uplifted.”
She is leading others to find the same strength that she gained in her toughest moments.