He perked up when he told me about his past, “I went to school with Randy Owens where I grew up in Alabama.” For those who are not familiar with the old school country music charts, Owens was tops in his game during the 1980’s and 90’s as he performed as the lead singer of “Alabama.” As the homeless man continued to talk he said, “He’s a couple of years older than me.”
We then started talking about his past. “In 1976 I went to prison after I got caught with 100 pounds of marijuana.” Ironically, the arrest happened in Colorado where it is now legal to smoke pot. “At one point, I owned two houses,” he told me. “I bought the weed off of shrimping boats in Florida,” he explained. He ended up spending four of an eight year sentence behind bars in Colorado.
This past May he was asleep outside of a Chattanooga gas station when unknown persons attacked him. While sleeping, he was beat with a brick and his legs and ankle jumped on to the point of breaking. He spent three months under medical care while in the hospital and later rehabilitation.
They never found who assaulted him, but he lives with the scars of it daily. In fact, his heel even had to be reconstructed which leaves him in pain when walking.