Homeless & Battling Cancer
Please pray for these men and let their stories inspire you to love more, give more, and serve more.
Dan: Bus to nowhere leads to hope at the Mission.
An unwanted legacy: Not only did Dan’s family leave him a legacy of drinking, he also follows in the footsteps of his dad and four uncles who all had cancer.
Dan’s* father and grandfather drank. When he found their alcohol he took a few sips and was hooked. He was just ten years old. Alcohol became a regular part of his life and led him down a dark path of destruction, violence, debt, drunkenness and even homelessness.
“When I didn’t have a job I stayed with a friend or in the back of my truck. The longest I was homeless was eight years.”
He hit rock bottom when he came to Everett to stay with a friend. When the friend never showed up to get him at the bus station, he was homeless in a strange city. He came to Everett Gospel Mission for food and shelter. But he also knew something had to change. He gladly enrolled in our recovery program and has gone on to stay sober for two years.
But just as life started to turn around, years of chewing tobacco took its toll. A biopsy of a lump in his throat brought horrific news. It was cancer.
He has surgery and radiation treatments ahead of him. But for now he has HOPE, with a place to call home and a “family” at the Mission to stand alongside him.
Ryan: The unwelcomed Christmas guest we’ve come to love.
Everyone in Ryan’s family abandoned him. He is working toward having a home of his own even as he fights cancer.
Ryan* was married for 17 years, but the last months were full of fighting. On Christmas Eve, he was hoping to have Christmas dinner with people he thought were his friends. Instead, they
Ryan was welcomed, ate Christmas Dinner and was offered a place to sleep. Thankful, he accepted. As he began making a plan to rebuild his life, he just couldn’t shake feeling sick. Finally, one of our staff members got him to the doctor.dropped him off at the Mission.
After several tests and x-rays, the test results were in. He had cancer.
The doctor told him he likely had just months to live.
“I’m not going to be 85 years old with a bunch of grandkids running around,” he said in a recent interview. “I plan to try to make the best of it.”
Your support today will help suffering people like Ryan live life to the fullest by helping them when they need it most and extending HOPE in the love of Jesus Christ.
Charlie: From combat overseas to battling PTSD and leukemia while homeless
Terminal Cancer has given Charlie a new outlook on life. He is trusting Jesus every step of every day.
Charlie* was once a combat medic. But when he got out of the army, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) set in. He also suffered a series of tragedies — his son and his brother died serving their country. His wife died in childbirth. His sister died from lupus. It was all too much.
He began self-medicating with alcohol and serious drugs. He was getting in trouble with the law, too. Then, one day, God called to him.
“I had my spiritual awakening one morning. I realized what I’d done with my life,” Charlie said.
He wanted to get into a program and start over. He knew that God had more in store for him. He arrived at the Mission and was eager to begin a new life.
But a month and a half later, he fell violently ill. He couldn’t keep food down and had severe abdominal pain. Charlie found out he had a mass near his liver. Even worse, a biopsy revealed the source of the growth: leukemia.
“They said it’s terminal,” he recalled of the day his results came in. “It’s gotten into my spinal fluid and on its way to my brain. They’re just treating the symptoms.”
Despite the grim prognosis, Charlie has a profound faith in God, impacting everyone around him. He has confidence in his future.
“The Lord showed me that as long as I surrender and do His will, He’s gong to take care of me,” Charlie told us.
Most touching of all, is how appreciative Charlie is of the help he has found at the Mission. “I felt like I belonged here from the very first day,” he declared.
“I like the man that I was, the man that my wife knew,” he added with tears in his eyes.
Please pray for Charlie as he grows closer to God and touches the lives of others by sharing his story and the HOPE he has found.
Gone But Not Forgotten
We recently remembered 14 homeless men that we lost in 2013 due to cancer, illness or another cause. No matter the reason, here at the Mission we believe life is just as important at the end as it is at the beginning. And we believe every name should be spoken. God loves and values us all! Sadly, many more people in our State die without any kind of remembrance.
Here are the names of the guests we’ve lost:
- Patrick Dawson
- Terrance Blue
- Luther Ray
- David Mickleberry
- Zach Mori
- Paul Hetzel
- Daniel Mc Collum
- William “Cowboy” Mc Entire
- Patrick Black, Robert Baker
- Steve Martinez
- Lonnie Rosburg
- Richard Molleker
- Frank Wiedl
Thank you for your support and prayers for the Mission and the thousands of men, women and children that we help. For the men above, your support made sure they felt loved and cared for at the end their lives. Thank you!
*Names changed for privacy.