A Bus Ticket Home
When So Hum Locals on Patrol (formerly Take Back Our Town) walked through Garberville and Redway on Halloween, they thought they’d express their concerns about keeping the sidewalks clear, make the streets a little safer, pick up a little trash, and move on. However, a homeless man they met touched their hearts and opened their wallets.
When Brian, who wishes to keep his last name and the location of his hometown private, met the So Hum Town Patrol on October 31, he told them he just wanted to go home.
“My mother and a group of people on patrol in Redway came across this man,” explained Tara Sutherland. “He was extremely nice and was upset. They talked to him, got to know [his] story and also found out it was his birthday.”
At first the Patrol was skeptical but he showed them his ID which confirmed his statement. Brian told the Patrol that he had, in Sutherland’s words, gotten “stranded in Garberville/Redway and wanted to leave.”
A few days later, on Tuesday the 3rd of November, the group pitched in and bought him a ticket. “My mother went to meet him at the bus stop with a lunch sack and water since it was going to be such a long travel to make sure he was more comfortable,” Sutherland explained.
Vonai Graham, Sutherland’s mother said as Brian walked up to the bus stop, “I ran into Ray’s and picked up the Deli sandwich that I had called in and ordered earlier–a bottle of water, a small bag of chips, an apple and a banana, put [it] in a bag and drove up to the bus stop. I gave him, Brian, the tickets and the bagged lunch.”
She noticed that some of Brian’s items he had been carrying before were gone.
“While we were waiting for the bus, I noticed that he didn’t have a backpack and other belongings that he had had the day before so I ask him where his things were, he told be that he was robbed last night and his stuff was all stolen from him,” Graham said.
She added, “As I sat and watched the bus drive away I was thinking to myself that I hope he finds a better life someday… .”