I was born in Fort Collins Colorado so I guess that makes me a Colorado native. From the second grade through high school I lived in Canon city Colorado. I did not come from a Christian family, and was the first one in my family to accept Jesus as my God and Savior on a Thursday night about 8 PM in 1971. By the grace of God I graduated from high school, and joined the Navy reserve at the age of 17 at the end of my sophomore year. By the time I graduated I was designated fireman, (E-3).
During my high school career, I thought I was going to make the Navy a career. I graduated from high school, May 25th, 1965 and subsequently enlisted in the regular Navy, June 7th, 1965. By 17 June I was in Danang, Vietnam. The first eight months, I was attached to a hatched gang, unloading cargo ships. My last four months I lived on a Mike boat, with the shack built on the back. We ferried Cargo from cargo ships, to the beachhead on monkey mountain and Danang proper. I almost lost my left leg due to an infection from a bug bite. This happened in Chi Lai, Vietnam. I spent 19 days in a Marine field hospital.
After my tour in Vietnam, I was assigned to the USS Hyman DD 732, stationed outside of New Orleans Louisiana. I obtained the rank of petty officer third class. I wrote a letter to Washington to return to Vietnam. I did not fit in to the routine of the regular Navy. My life was a mess, and I thought that by going to Vietnam for a second tour my life would have some meaning. The U.S. Navy was more than happy to send me back to Vietnam and this time I was on River patrol boats. I was stationed in the Mekong Delta and experienced some combat. I was honorably discharged from the U.S. Navy June 7, 1969.
I worked in the machine shop, as a radial drill operator, and set up man. In January, 1971, I quit my job and enrolled at community College of Denver. I was in a psychology 101 class, where there were three Christians who stood up for the cause of Christ. At the end of the quarter I found myself asking this one Christian man what church he attended. He told me Riverside Baptist Church. I visited the following Sunday, and that following Thursday either at the end of March, or beginning of April, two preachers and a preacher’s wife visited and shared Christ with me. I accepted Christ about 8 PM on a Thursday night.
The next three years, I was discipled, and encouraged to share my faith. I also became involved in the Upper Room Coffeehouse, a ministry to Hispanic youth on the west side of Denver. During this time some members of my family came to the Lord, when one of my childhood friends came to the Lord. Another man and I would go to college campuses and engage students in conversations about the Lord.
My childhood friend, married a former seminary student, who wanted to be a missionary in Argentina. They were attending an inner-city church plant, Neighborhood Church of the Master. I decided to leave Riverside and become an involved member of Neighborhood Church. A couple years later I attended a missions conference in Urbana Illinois. It was there that I somehow sensed that I wanted to be involved in planting churches in the inner-city. A recently appointed missionary asked the pastor of Neighborhood Church if I could come over and help him. From the mid-70s, till the present I have been involved in inner-city church planting and ministry.
I majored in urban studies, with the minor in sociology, and took three years of Spanish. Got a BA
I met my wife at church or the risen Lord in August 1978, we were married August 1979. We have three children, Jonas Bratton, Jonathan Evans, and Anna Grace Evans. Depending on how you look at things we have between five and 10 grandchildren.
I also worked for UPS for 30 years. And the last eight I have worked at B-line express couier Inc.. I am also a district leader at Primerica, and a youngevity distributor.
I am a self-supporting missionary with Haven Ministries. I mostly do campus evangelism. I have also gone to various outreaches to people involved in cults and psychic fairs.