Homeless Gear, Murphy Center Mourn Loss of Long-Time Guest and Friend


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For Immediate Release:

Homeless Gear and the Murphy Center Mourn Loss of George, a Long-Time Guest of the Murphy Center and Friend to the Organization—George Escaped Homelessness Earlier this Year

Fort Collins, Colorado, October 15, 2016

Homeless Gear today mourns the loss of George, a long-time guest of the Murphy Center, who died abruptly this week, just months after he had escaped homelessness. Homeless Gear released the following statement:

Almost every morning this year, just as the Murphy Center opened, a man — homeless and struggling with addiction — strode into the building. He sported a colorful fanny pack and a white beard that (as is often the case for the people we serve) belied his actual, relatively-youthful age.

That man died last weekend — no longer homeless, no longer using drugs — quietly in his apartment. It was an abrupt, heartbreaking and undeserved end for a man who had worked hard to turn his life around; but it was also an end with dignity, and a testament to his tireless efforts and the people who helped him along the way.

Today, we pay homage to the man and say thanks to the people who brought joy to his life.

Homelessness is a complex issue that elicits passionate and sometimes-competing responses. The man who passed away encapsulated many of those complexities.

But he also encapsulated a simpler, far-more uplifting truth: there is always a path forward — always an opportunity for a brighter future. This man emerged from the darkness, surrounded himself with people who cared and, ultimately, built a life that brought him happiness.

So to the many agencies who helped him move forward and find a home; to the many people experiencing homelessness who gave him friendship, hope and support; and to the countless others with whom he crossed paths: we say thank you.

Rest in Peace. We wish the journey could have lasted longer.

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