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Guest stories: Henry

At 67, Henry is an English citizen, a veteran of the Vietnam war, a gardener, and an avid reader, with gentle eyes and a gentler American drawl from decades spent abroad. He returned to England ten weeks ago and has been homeless ever since.

There is no anger in his voice as he tells his story, though he deserves to be angry; he blames no one, though he could. He is simply confused that after ten weeks of homelessness he is no closer to having his own bed. "I don't want anything fancy," he adds, "but some days you want to sleep in, don't want to wake up so early and wander around without your own spot." The wandering has been even harder since a bus accident that put him in hospital for a month, pinched several nerves in his back, and continues to cause him pain even as he sits quietly with his coffee.

With no access to the veteran's benefits he receives from America, and no help with housing from the  council, Shelter from the Storm is his only home.

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