When doctors told Debbie Thomas she had cancer decades ago, they said she had six months to live. And if she DID survive, having children was out of the question.

But "God had other plans," she says.

Along came Earl, whom she calls her miracle child.

"God said differently. And it's been over 28 years ago. So I'm blessed."

The miracle child, Earl, became one of the best players in the NFL, starting at safety for the Seahawks.

Debbie says Earl was competitive and "a fighter, a warrior" from a young age, even competing in her bible quizzes with his brother Seth.

Earl's dad would toughen up the boys in the garage by having them run into pots and pans.

"He didn't do that a lot when I was around," she remembers with a laugh.

Evening is your guide to Seattle and the Pacific Northwest. Watch it weeknights at 7:30 on KING 5 TV or streaming live on KING5.com. Connect with Evening via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or email: eveningtips@king5.com.