Thursday, April 25, 2024

It's time we see these ghosts

| December 18, 2020 1:00 AM

This is as good a time as any to remember those we never knew.

We never knew them because they were homeless, invisible to so many eyes.

But not to Pam Houser's.

Pam, an administrator at Heritage Health, recently reached out to The Press to see about placing an obituary unlike any we've encountered before.

Here's what Pam wrote:

"Heritage Health lost 10 Street Medicine patients this year. These folks are in our homeless population and usually die alone, no service, no celebration of life, no recognition that they even walked this Earth.

"We want to pay honor to these individuals with a remembrance obituary a few days before National Homeless Remembrance Day (Dec. 21). Kerri Thoreson will write the obituary, recognizing each by name but the 'information' will be for all."

Sweet Pam asked if a discount on the obituary might be possible. Instead, The Press charged nothing and appreciated the opportunity to share this important information without profiting by it.

Kerri did indeed pen a nice obituary, which is scheduled to appear in tomorrow's Press.

Our request is simple to assimilate; perhaps less so to follow.

Let's all work harder to "see" these otherwise invisible members of our community. When possible, let's lend them a hand. Let's show them some respect, a valuable investment in their dignity — because they really don't have much else.

The Press also commits to publishing at no charge an annual In Memoriam from Heritage Health honoring the homeless clients they served that year.

Meantime, Monday is National Homeless Remembrance Day. Let's not forget — ever again.