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Bangor marks National Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day

Published: Dec. 21, 2021 at 9:55 PM EST
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - Tuesday marks National Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day.

In Bangor - Tuesday’s ceremony served as a solemn reminder of the year that was, and a hopeful look ahead.

The Bangor community came together Tuesday night on National Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day to reflect on a difficult year and look ahead to next.

The ceremony at the Hope House provided light on the day with the most darkness both with a candlelit walkway and a Christmas tree.

More than anything, those in attendance say the night of remembrance demonstrated unity.

“It means that a lot of people care.,” said Hope House Manager of Operations and Community Affairs Bruce Hews. “These little angels are all names of people that we lost, people that lost friends, family members. It shows that it was a really hard year.”

A year made harder by recent events.

“We’ve lost a lot of people this year, and just December 5, tragically lost three people in a fire that shouldn’t have happened,” said Hope for Homeless Co-Founder Ann Sweeney. “All their family members have reached out to me and donated to us to help us help, and the board and I have decided we’ve got to somehow get housing, how do we get involved more so? We need to find a permanent solution for this.”

“We might work for different organizations, and they all might have different names, but we’re all on the same team,” said Bangor Salvation Army Soup Kitchen Coordinator James Moores. “I like to think a smile could change the world.”

James Moores knows as well as anyone. After suffering from addiction and homelessness, Moores now helps others as the soup kitchen coordinator for the Bangor Salvation Army. He now hopes to inspire others.

“I got clean and sober living here at the Hope House,” said Moores. “I put myself through college, and one of my goals while I was doing that was to turn around and help the next people that are me. I think if more people would do that, we could make a difference.”

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