DALLAS -- Known as "Mrs. D," Evelyn Dickerson has been giving the gift of literacy through truckloads of books given away each year to young Dallas residents.

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Dickerson was among three individuals honored Thursday for her work with the community at The Otis and Rosie Brown Foundation's Extraordinary Is Gala in Dallas, where Olympian Carl Lewis was the key note speaker.

For 40 years, Dickerson taught students with the Dallas Independent School District and Paul Quinn College. Now, she continues to spread knowledge. Each year, two 18-wheeler trucks packed with books are driven into Dallas neighborhoods, where kids are given the books for free.

"I lost my mother when I was 14 years old," she said. "Someone had to help me, had to help my sister and had to help my brothers. And so, I learned that giving is the key that makes your heart feel the joy because the more you give the more God gives to you."