Sorrow poured on sorrow and anger overflowing it all. What dark and challenging times! So I want to share the recent death of a homeless friend of mine, striking the note of what value her life was to those of us who knew her.

Jodi was one of those people for whom the term “salt of the earth” seemed to apply. She smiled and laughed a lot and was always very animated. She would have made a fabulous campground host, which is what she and her husband had planned, until he died suddenly.


For a while Jodi came to The Living Room almost every day to eat, sometimes to do laundry, shower, and rest her body after sleeping in her car. She was a loyal friend to many and one in particular, who was like a sister to her. And she had a connection with dogs, knew the homeless dog population well, and cared for them in every way she could.


Jodi was one of the women of whom I did a portrait story for a project I have been developing for The Living Room. I dropped off her framed portrait this morning to display with her memorial in the parking lot of TLR, where people in need come between 10am and 1pm each weekday to receive hot food and other necessities. Chairs are placed six feet apart in from of the memorial so that people may stop and take a minute to write in the book any memories they have of Jodi.

As I was leaving today two of her friends saw the memorial and were dismayed to hear she had passed. In that moment they had me and each other to share memories with. Hopefully many more will see and share their memories of her and feel uplifted by her example.




  1. Beautifully written and so wonderful to have her portrait painted by you. I am so sorry for all of you who mourn her. I know the memorial will have meaning for many. Your caring heart is reaching others.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Susan:

    Your portrait of Jodi brings special joy to me as she was my sister. I had no idea she was homeless until she passed. I am so touched by her and how she touched and connected with others when she was down and out. I had not been in touch with her in a few years. I wondered how she was but Facebook was my only avenue to reach her and that failed. I am not surprised she took to the dog population as that was always her love. I want to get a copy of your book when it is out. I will add my email to the list to keep in touch. Thank you for your work sharing the stories of the lives of others so we can all be educated and understand how people can ALL contribute.


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