Are you guys heartless?!?!? This has got to be the saddest freakin' story I have ever heard! It sounds like a country-western song! Holy cow!!!Originally posted by mcollinstn
No, but I knew a man named Hoggie.
He was born paralyzed from the waist down. He lived in a poor neighborhood with his sister's family and was around 50 when I met him. He got around walking on his knuckles and dragged his shriveled-up legs behind him.
My old shop was backed up to his neighborhood. He used to come and borrow money. He'd borrow $20 and at the end of the month when "his check" would come, he would pay it back. Two or three days later he would re-borrow it.
Sometimes I would let him sit on the couch inside the front door and holler when somebody needed to come in (we kept the front door locked when nobody was up front cause we would lose typewriters and calculators otherwise). I would pay Hoggie in RC Colas.
One day we fixed his wagon for him (an old red Radio Flyer). I put ball bearings in the wheels, reinforced the axle brackets and added a handbrake to it for him. A few days later (it was nice weather and the overhead doors were open) we heard him hollering and he sped by the shop headed down the big hill towards the railroad tracks. All we could do was run out front and watch him launch over the tracks (talk about "big air")...
He wasn't hurt badly - I had put the brake on the side where his "bad" hand was and he couldn't grasp the brake to pull it...
A church gave him an old wheelchair for him to go to church with after the wagon incident. Once again, I rebuilt it and made it functionally better than new (I even pop riveted an aluminum company ID tag on it with my company name and phone number). The State Fair was in town and he "hired" some neighborhood teenagers to push him to the fair so he could watch the people. Once they got him there, they asked for their $5 and then abandoned him. After he was abandoned, other kids dumped him out of the chair and stole it from him. Cops found the kids pushing each other across busy traffic in the chair the next day, and called me since my number was on the tag. I went to meet them and get the chair and asked about "Hoggie". They had no idea what I was talking about and when I told them about him, we all went to the fairgrounds and found him huddled under on of the Ferris Wheel equipment trailers where he had crawled to keep warm that night. His sister had called the police looking for him but they had not found him that night (he probably didn't recognize their voices)...
We moved the business from that location in 1987. Saw in the newspaper a few years back where he had died. Johnnie Marvin (Hoggie) Talbot, I believe was his full name.
Pitiful as he was, he was about as happy a guy as I've ever known. He sure didn't worry himself about many of the things that give all of us ulcers. We could all learn a little from him..
*** Course THIS is probably a DIFFERENT Hoggie than the one you are looking for, eh?? ***