AT&T voice messaging service change almost loses family's inspirational message from late daughter

By Keith Garvin - Anchor/Reporter

It's just a few seconds of a precious voice, a precious moment that will never be forgotten by Robin Secrest and her family.

The voicemail greeting is one of the last memories of their daughter Holly, who passed away from cancer in 1999 when she was just four years old.

Recorded after Holly was diagnosed at the age of two, the message is just 10 seconds long, but it's given the family tremendous comfort for the past 17 years.

"For 17 years, I have been paying AT&T $53 a month," says Robin, "which is over $10,000 just to have that message."

But the sweet memory was almost erased from their hard-line messaging system forever. Robin says last week, her provider AT&T abruptly changed their voice messaging system and deleted the voice message she and Holly recorded all those years ago.

"I started to have a nervous breakdown," Robin recalls after realizing the message had been erased. "You have to be a parent that has lost a child to even begin to understand what this little, bitty, four-second voice means."

When Robin says the company told her there was nothing that could be done, she reached out to Channel 2. We made contact with AT&T, and after a few day,s the company was able to retrieve the message.

It is a memory that was nearly lost for good that now will be forever cherished even more.

"I've literally cried almost all day today," says Robin. "And I've probably listened to it 50 times."

AT&T says customers with the same messaging system the Secrests have will only have until May 10 to retrieve those messages.

To access to the old mailbox to retrieve any old messages:

  1. Dial the CallNotes Access Number: (281) 873-7777 (Note: The access numbers vary depending or geographic location and the individual CallNotes System.)
  2. When the system answers, press the Star Key "*" on the telephone.
  3. When prompted to enter the mailbox number, dial: (281) 255-XXXX
  4. When prompted to enter the passcode for the mailbox, the customer will need to dial the passcode that they used with the CallNotes mailbox.

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