Charles Wayne Bishop

When I first met Charles, we instantly connected. Charles is 63 and has lived on the streets of Austin for around 15 years. When we met he was living under the Chase Bank drive through downtown. He suffers from congestive heart failure, diabetes, and countless other medical problems, but he still has the passion and drive to wake up every morning to advocate for Vietnam Vets that have it worse. Charles inspired me and I him and on that night a bond was formed that one rarely encounters in life.

When Alexander speaks his words cut deep. When he gives you a hug he means it. And when he says he loves you, you feel it. Upon meeting him you would think he was the happiest guy in the world, but as you get to know him you can feel the pain he holds inside. For 16 years, Alex has endured the harsh conditions of life on the streets and the emptiness of prison. Everyday is a fight as he battles addiction and depression. But he presses forward, fueled by his love for music and the dream that he will one day prove everyone wrong.

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Michael W. Shellen

Michael is one of the most positive people I have met to date. Nothing deters his sense of humor or hilarious jokes that come with insightful wisdom sprinkled in. He has lived a full life. Grew up in Vietnam, retired as a United States Marine, and has lived in Austin for 20 years now with 15 of those years on the streets. As he approaches 70, he would love to have a place to call his own, but he makes the best of his situation and continues to laugh and tell jokes everyday. Hear his story and be filled with joy.