Tuesday, March 8, 2016

The Sockman of Crystal Lake

As reported in The Christian Science Monitor and other media, Tom McNamara is dedicating his retirement years to giving new socks to the homeless. After 30 years as a special education teacher, the Crystal Lake, Illinois man suffered tragedies in 2009 which changed his life. First, water backed up from the sewer and flooded the finished basement of his home for 33 days. Two months later, his house burned. He salvaged what he could and stored it in his garage until someone kicked down the door and stole everything. In February, 2010, his wife was murdered by a schizophrenic homeless man. Instead of staying angry, he found a cause, and now he says, "I feel I'm doing God's work, His mission work."

                                                                                                            Courtesy of Tom McNamara
In less than four years, Tom has driven his RV to 23 states, giving away over 5,000 pairs of warm, new socks to homeless men, women and children. He remembers how grateful one homeless man was. "A guy sat down right away, took off his shoes and socks, and put on the new ones. 'You have no idea how good these feel,' he said."In New Orleans, kids were saying, 'Mister, this is better than sex, drugs, anything!' Socks are the gold commodity in homelessness."

Tom has three children, all grown up. They and many of his friends are learning to pay it forward too. "I've heard more and more friends are putting socks in their cars" he says. Maybe you should have a package of new socks in your car too? Just in case?

No comments:

Post a Comment