[Hpn] HOMELESSMAN MAN IN COMA GETS THOUSANDS OF MESSAGES AND CARDS

William Charles Tinker wtinker@metrocast.net
Sun, 16 May 2004 03:33:28 -0400


www.WHAS11.com

Thousands send messages of support to homeless man.

Saturday, May 15, 2004

By Chloe Friedman / WHAS 11 News

Louisville, Ky -- A homeless man remains in coma in Louisivlle but thousands
are pulling for his recovery.

Clifton Agenew was beaten, sodomized and then left to die behind the
Salvation Army, weeks ago.
One woman started a campaign to help Clifton and her idea caught on. It
began with an e-mail.
"I said send him a card to protest the inhumanity to man," says homeless
advocate Kaye Thomas. "Clifton met two very bad people one afternoon in
Louisville, but those people are few and far between."
She had never met Agnew before the attack. Thomas then became his next of
kin stopping by daily to read cards that had just started to trickle in.
At first about 24 cards came.
"I thought this is awesome,"says Thomas.
The next day 75 arrived.
"I thought this is tremendous," Thomas told WHAS News.
By the end of the next week, Agnew had received 708 cards. Thomas readily
admits, she thought that would be the end of it. But she was wrong, the
cards kept coming. Now Agnew has received more than six thousand cards.
Thomas reads every one of them to her new friend, even though she is not
sure he can hear her.
"I just read and cry and I say Clifton I'm sure your sick of hearing me read
these cards. You could scream, but I say buddy I gotta read em to you."
The messages are all heartfelt like one that reads "Dear Clifton, I'm
outraged that someone would torture and beat a homeless man. Many prayers
are being said for you."
Another says."We are all begging for you not to die. It is fun where I work,
maybe you could come visit someday.You may not realize it, but you are loved
and there are people watching over you.We will pray for you to heal and your
body to heal as well."
Thomas says she just wanted a person who has no known relatives to know he's
cared about. She's gotten much more than she ever hoped for.
"I think from all the cards we're seeing you can have love and compassion
for someone you've never met. If we can have that kind of spirit for
everyone imagine what a great place this would be," says Thomas.
Saturday was Clifton Agnew's 54th birthday. This past week he was moved to a
nursing home.