"Hernan was a very happy boy," she says. "He gave me flowers all the time. He's the first 'man' (to) give me flowers."
But her smile is thinly veiled -- her face splintering into tears as she permits the raw truth to surface.
On Valentine's Day in 1999, Hernan suffered severe head trauma while sledding in the snow-covered mountains above the Los Angeles basin.
Eva says she tried to reach her son but couldn't navigate thick snow and ice. She flagged down a passing vehicle and asked the occupants to alert authorities.
Hernan was airlifted to Huntington Memorial Hospital, where, two days later, he was declared brain dead.
A family care coordinator with One Legacy, an organ and tissue recovery agency, approached Eva and her husband, Arnold, to talk about donating Hernan's organs.