HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - Several dozen Hattiesburg residents gathered at City Hall Wednesday night to remember local people who are homeless this holiday season. The Pine Belt Coalition on Homelessness hosted a third annual candlelight vigil to mark National Homeless Persons' Memorial Day.
Organizers say they wanted to bring attention to the plight of the estimated 200 homeless people in Forrest County.
They also wanted to remember several homeless persons who died in our area in the last year.
"It takes one person to say, hey, I want to make a difference," said Toney Robinson, a former homeless person who attended the event. "Even if you can contribute donations or just take time in a shelter somewhere and just show these people that you really care, because they are Christ in the flesh also," Robinson said.
"It's a 'but for the Grace of God go I' issue," said Kathy Garner, chairperson of the Pine Belt Coalition on Homelessness. "With the economy the way it is, there are many people that are laid off. There are many, many faces of homelessness," Garner said.
National Homeless Persons' Memorial Day began in 1990.