Detroit Rescue Mission helps homeless escape frigid temps

Image 1 of 3

Terra Defoe leads a team looking to get the homeless out of the elements. 

"We'll make that loop around, then we have the guy on Eight Mile and Woodward that we keep an eye on," she said. "No one has transportation to get to a warming center. so Detroit Rescue Mission Cass Community Services and Lake Ridge Village has mobile units and this is what they do."

They rendezvous at the Rosa Parks Transit Center and their mission becomes instantly apparent.  Just a few minutes into our journey they meet Dale holding a sign at Woodward and Eight Mile.  
He is on his own and on the street.

"I've been out here for four years, almost five," he said, adding that these the hardest nights "by far."

He says nights this cold are unbearable. 

"On Sunday we ended up going to an abandoned house, there was no heat or nothing like that," he said.

And he knows he can't stay here. But with social anxiety among other problems, getting out of the cold or anywhere else is hard. 

"It's not easy to get a job, I don't have an ID, no Social Security card and birth certificate and no one to help," he said. "Except these people who I'm blessed because they do help me out."

"We are going to work on getting you out of here tonight," Defoe tells him.

And that is exactly what she did, finding a hotel to take both him and his girlfriend. 

"The group is going to come; help you load your stuff up. take you down to the hotel and get you checked in," she said.

The gesture takes a little bit of the burden off a man who takes it day by day. 

His story will have a happy ending or at least a warm one but as we turn the corner you see he is not alone.

There are 72 known locations by that organization looking to help the homeless. There are hundreds in his position so if you want to help you are asked to give to the Detroit Rescue Mission HERE.