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gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

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  • gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

    Does anyone know any background on the very sweet homeless man on 18th and 8th? I began saying hi to him and he thanked me for having done so, he has a very gracious nature as I have offered him some food and he is always very sweet about accepting the offer. Any ideas how to help him ? It's heartbreaking to see anyone so down and out as others walk by with their adorable little dogs and groceries from Balducci's.
    fauxfurr

  • #2
    Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

    Originally posted by fakefur View Post
    Any ideas how to help him ?
    I am just brainstorming here; I don't have any preset ideas. Anything I have done in the past is to help the situation at large, e.g., donating to City Harvest. To help one particular person is a different world. You don't know if he is sick, has a mental deficiency, any tendencies toward violence, etc.

    You could ask if he is aware of the services in the area, e.g., the soup kitchen at the Apostles Church on 28th and Ninth.

    Be careful. You are obviously compassionate, but make sure you watch out for yourself as you go down this road.

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    • #3
      Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

      Thanks for the advice. All good points. He sits next to Brooklyn Industries every day, I wonder if they have any insight on him. Thanks for yours!!!!!!
      fauxfurr

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      • #4
        Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

        I have actually spoken with him as well. He is very well-spoken and seems educated. He will literally talk your ear off. According to his story, he is a former lawyer from Long Island with two daughers. He aparently went through a nasty divorce and his "wife took everything."

        He used to be there all the time, day and night, all summer. Then he would come and go a couple days a week. He says he was picked up by the cops a few times and they take him to the hospital. Recently I've seen him on 18th between 9th and 10th - moved because of the kids at the high school there.

        I have also thought about how to help him, but outside of the occasional egg/cheese sandwich, I am not sure what could be done while protecting yourself as well.

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        • #5
          Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

          I wondered where he migrated to. He once told me his name was Jim and that he lost everything in his divorce.I would bring him bananas as he mentioned his teeth were not so "hot", and he had difficulty chewing. But he always spoke with dignity and was gracious about being given food. I must say I think of him everyday as I pass his old camp. I worry about his oncoming winter. Thanks vandyman13 for filling me in.
          fauxfurr

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          • #6
            Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

            I know this is an old post, but I loved stopping to talk to him too! I once sat on the pavement for what must have been an hour and chatted with him about literature. I got the same story about him as well. He was amazing. I saw him outside Callen Lorde maybe 6 months ago and he was about 10 feet away from the door and said he had been trying to gather enough strength to go in, physically. I had stopped to give him something to eat, and I always wish I had let him lean on me to get him close to the door. Of course, personal safety is first, though. As hard as it is to walk away. I did call and let them know he needed assistance though. I hope he is okay.

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            • #7
              Re: gracious homeless man on 8th and 18th

              I just happened upon this thread. I used to work in a law office with the homeless man you are referring to. His name is Jim and he is indeed a lawyer. He lived on the Island and was married with two little girls. His wife is also an attorney. I last worked with him in 2000 when a group of us went to another office and he did not join us. About two years ago, I spotted him in front of the church on 23rd between 6th and 7th Ave (I was across the street and he was in a group of similarly homeless men, so I did not speak to him) and have not seen him since. I assumed that he reunited with his wife and am so sorry to hear that he is still on the street. I have heard that he is estranged from other family members. No one ever need to be afraid of him. He is a genuinely nice, gentle person, no mental illness, no violence, just very nervous and, I think, an alcohol problem. If he would only seek and get the right type of help. After all, he still has a very valuable asset - his law degree. This is so, so sad. If I see him again, or hear anything regarding his whereabouts, I will post the info. There but for the grace........

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