Family honors late relatives with empty liquor bottles outside abandoned house

At an abandoned home near Webb and Petoskey on Detroit's west side you will find hundreds if not a thousand liquor bottles on the porch and sidewalk.

One family says this is how they honor their loved ones. We all have ways to memorialize family we've lost - and Emmanuel Humes is no exception.

"Everyone's different, this is our way of celebrating our family," Humes said.

These bottles are for his uncles Ive Silas and James Smith. Silas passed away in 2012 from a heart attack. Smith died in 2009 from cancer. Both were well-known for the love they had for their families and their community. 

"Just good people, always have got a helping hand," Humes said.

For the last three years when a liquor bottle empties during a family gathering, it is added to a growing collection outside an abandoned home across the street from where Humes lives. Sometimes, other friends drop a bottle off, too. 

Late family member Ive Silas

"It's a shock people actually are giving us praise about this," Humes said. "We didn't know it would take off like this. It's a proud moment every time you look over there. We never thought it would get this big."

Late family member James Smith.

Now when Humes has family over and looks across the street - "We feel their spirits are still around, you can feel their presence they know we are still doing good in life and they're sitting back probably celebrating in heaven," Humes said.

The family says they plan to keep the memorial until they are forced to clean it up - or until this home gets demolished.

Emmanuel Humes