John is currently staying at https://www.ugmtc.org/ Shelter in St. Paul and working as a Package Handler for a local shipping company. We gave him a bus pass and work clothes for his job, and he gave us a powerful example of what it means to overcome obstacles with grace: In 2009, John was walking with his 4-year-old son down a street in Philadelphia. His life was going well. He was a married man with 2 children and a budding career in construction. But, all of that changed in a minute when two men approached him and one pulled out a gun. They decided he was the wrong person, but the gunman was worried that John could identify them so he pulled the trigger 4 times. Bullets landed in John’s stomach, back, and hand. His son was physically okay, but John was left in a wheelchair. He stayed in that chair for 2 years, determined to rise out of it, and worked hard on rehabilitation. Currently, he walks with a cane and feels that physical work is increasing his strength. Think of the courage it takes to overcome even simple obstacles in our lives, and then think of John – who is facing Herculean ones – including relocating to a new area alone after the death of his beloved mother.
John came to Minnesota to make a better life for himself and, after he gets settled he plans to bring his family here. His son is now 13-years-old, and his daughter is 11. They need their dad. In a thank you note, John said, “One small sum can be a big help. I appreciate your donation. It plays a big part in bettering the community by helping people get to work.”