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  • Tammi Ector

Love Your Neighbor - Joe

Have a Heart for Joe Joe

Hurt – The death of my mom will always be it. I don’t care what anyone says. It has been six years. Everything I did leading up to that point was for my mom. My parents got divorced when I was a kid. My mom raised me. I wanted her to have a better retirement from her job in California. Family and friends doubted my ability to pursue things. I was being published in independent art magazines. I was reciting poems on public radio. I became an actor through community theater, and a local musician/bass player. I had a gig at VGFW and would run to the theater and do walk on/walk off voiceovers. People were showing up. I had parts. Mom was coming. I would steal the show with the way I delivered lines. Mom would be right there. I loved to see her reaction. With the room layout, it looked like a late-night talk show. I had a bass guitar and could see “Late Night with Jo Sanchez”. That was my end game plan. Right when mom passed, she wanted to represent me and be my agent. I was almost a big deal. Then she went to the hospital. I can’t emphasize enough, mom was it. Mom’s specialty was unemployment. She got her MSW when she got promoted. If I had ended up in a situation like this, she wouldn’t have bailed me out. She would have asked me what I can learn from the experience. When I bang my head, I ask myself what I am not learning.

Help – I tried staying with sister for the first year. She wanted someone to blame. Mom did not want any help in the end. I had to call the paramedics at the last minute. I went with them initially. The minute mom was buried, I felt they [my family] wanted me dead. I tried going to work at Amazon. I went to truck driving school. One day I was doing express runs from Nevada. The truck started hissing. The trailer was swaying in back. It turned out. I lost the gear assembly. The trailer jackknifed and went to the ground in Mt. Shasta California. The refrigerator trailer system was going to blow up. I didn’t care because my career was done. I went back to California. I had lost touch with everyone. I went to work for a church. I worked with them for a year. We opened a men’s’ home in Dayton, Ohio. The House of Miracles. It’s like Serve City. There were seven guys I was supposed to take there. They were getting off drugs and alcohol, etc. They were going back to church and work. Doing well. We got informed the house shut down. I had to stay until I was told what was happening. They did not send me back home. They dropped me off in a Gateway Gettysburg shelter. They partnered with Lighthouse. Some guys from there brought me here to Serve City. I’ve been here in Ohio for roughly six years. My dad came to see me two years ago. He had gotten an office job. He wanted me to go with him. Everything looked good.

Hope – I know things can go well for me over here. I am motivated. I have a sense of discipline and duty. How I run myself when I’m not here and doing what I’m supposed to be doing. People always tell me to slow down. But then I crash. Because it’s depression. I can tell a difference in me now. Now I can feel myself coming back because when people start messing up, I stay motivated. I want a comeback. I’m waiting for the comeback. I’m competitive. Everything’s a competition. I want to win the championship again.

Joe Joe describes himself as dutiful.

Have a heart for Joe Joe, a dutiful man.

To give to our Love Your Neighbor campaign please click the logo to donate online. To mail donations please send to:

Serve City 622 East Ave Hamilton, Ohio 45011.

*All proceeds will go to benefits our residents.

To learn more about the steps of our Move Forward housing program click here.

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