Community gathers to remember the homeless who have died this year

9:53 PM, Dec 20, 2012   |    comments
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Community members gathered to remember the homeless and the formerly homeless who died this year. Knoxville hosted its fourth annual Homeless Persons' Memorial Day on Thursday.

The event is commemorated in more than 150 cities and counties across the country.

Folks gathered for a candlelight walk that began at Cherokee Health Systems. They then attended a memorial service at St. John's Lutheran Church where the names of the homeless who have died in 2012 were read.

"It just brings the humanity towards these people. These people are and have, you know, mothers, fathers, and brothers and sister, and everything and these are our Knoxvillians, these are our people," said Matt Tillery, outreach coordinator.

According to Cherokee Health Systems, homeless people are three to four times more likely to die than the general population.

On average, people with housing in the U.S. can expect to live to age 78. Our long-term homeless neighbors can expect to live to about to about the age of 50.

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