He was one of the invisible people.  He got here because alcohol had claimed another victim.  Like most, it didn’t start that way.  He was a working man, a father, someone’s brother and their son.  I know nothing of these details, but I know where he ended up.  I know the conversations we had.  He owned up to his mistakes and really was trying to do better, but somehow, that dark cloud hung over him.  He worked odd jobs to make ends meet, but when the weather turned bad he couldn’t ride his bike to the job site-so he lost his job.  He still remained hopeful.  Each time we’d come to bring him a meal or just to stop by to talk, he told us of the progress he was making and how he knew he’d get a job soon.  That day came, and he was overjoyed.  So much so, that he and some of the guys celebrated that night.  When he arrived at the job site the next morning, they had to let him go.  The smell of alcohol was too strong to ignore.  Still he remained hopeful.  As the next interview was lining up, he promised he wouldn’t blow it by doing anything foolish like drinking again.  He kept his promise, but a misstep caused him to injure his leg and have it placed in a boot.  Though frustrated, he still remained hopeful.  The last time we talked to him, he was hungry and wanted food, which we planned to deliver it to him, though we never got the chance to.  The call came in around 3AM telling us he had died and we couldn’t believe it.  We were hoping it wasn’t true.  Even now it seems unreal, but the reality is he is with us no more, I simply hope his spirit is at peace…

One thought on “Jim”

  1. Hi Clarence & Arline : This is Keith Henderson. My wife & I met you at the Messert Ethiopia event. It was indeed a pleasure meeting & talking with the both of you. I was very impressed with your food program. I would like to donate to the program whenever I’m able to. I prefer to donate by check without using credit card via internet. Please forward me the address & payable to whom. Blessings , Keith & Tezetta Henderson

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