[Hpn] Advocate For Homeless Retires,Is Leaving The Area

William Charles Tinker wtinker@metrocast.net
Mon, 29 Aug 2005 06:54:58 -0400


Advocate for homeless retires, is leaving area

      By Phil Drake, Staff Writer

      Ron Sachs says it was about 15 years ago that he and Doris, the woman
who would become his wife, were at a New Year's Eve party together.
      She told him she was going to deliver some food to the needy and asked
if he would like to come along.

      "I said, `S ure, ' and here we are,' Ron Sachs, 71, said Sun day as
about 50 people gathered at St. Matthews United Methodist Church in Hacienda
Heights to say goodbye to the couple, who are moving north to a retirement
home in Somerset.

      Ron Sachs went on in 1994 to be a founding member of the East San
Gabriel Valley Co alition for the Homeless, a nonprofit organization that op
erates a winter homeless shel ter December through March, provides emergency
assistance year-round to the needy and has a transitional housing pro gram
to put people into homes.

      Last year, the winter shelter run by a slew of area churches that
provide beds for the needy on church grounds served about 900 people, said
Irene Ku bo, the coalition's executive di rector. With repeat business that
totaled 14,000 beds.

      Kubo and other board members said Ron Sachs' departure would be felt
throughout their group.

      "It's going to leave a big hole,' Kubo said. "It will not be the

      Colleen Castellano, director of the emergency assistance shel ter,
agreed. "There's nothing you can't ask of him that he won't do,' she said.

      Al Matthews said Ron Sachs was the person who got him in volved in the
program. "With out Ron we would not have been here all these years,' he

      Sachs has been homeless him self but was able to turn his life around.

      In a 2002 interview, he said he was born to well-to-do parents and
grew up in Paris. The life style taught him sympathy for street people, he
said. From 1988

      to 1991, Sachs lived in Northeast California and slept on the ground.

      Doris Sachs, 67, said it was not easy to leave the area.

      "I have mixed feelings,' she said. "I will get a new house and be
closer to my daughter, but I am leaving 42 years of friends and people who
are al most family here.'

      The banquet included plaque presentations from the city of La Puente,
the office of Assem blyman Ed Chavez, D-Industry, and county Supervisor Don

      Coalition members presented Ron Sachs with a gavel and Do ris Sachs
with an angel.

      Laureen Novak, a former coali tion member who said she often butted
heads with Ron Sachs, got the biggest laugh of the eve ning when she
referred to Do ris' gift.

      "He has a wife who is an an gel,' she said. "She has done wonders with

      But, she added, Ron Sachs had "the most gentle heart of any man I have
ever seen.'

      Ron Sachs said he was sure his ministry for the needy was not over.

      "The Lord will give me a new assignment,' he said. "I'll be put to
work somewhere.'

      Phil Drake can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2110, or by e-mail
at news.tribune@sgvn.com

William Charles Tinker

New Hampshire Homeless  / Founded 11-28-99
25 Granite Street
Northfield,N.H. 03276-1640  USA
Advocates,activists for disabled,displaced human rights.