Homeless man's warming fire put out

AUBURN — Firefighters responded to reports of a garbage fire near Bonney Park on Sunday night.

At least one unit responded to the fire, which was started using trash and brush, and extinguished it just before 6 p.m.

"I've been doing this for eight years," said the man who started the fire. "I'm homeless," he explained, and said he was making the fire for warmth.

The man, who goes by Mark, was leaving the scene around 6 p.m. He said that he had started the fire just off of Bonney Park behind Florian's Market on Main Street.

He also said that the firefighters had extinguished the fire when they arrived on the scene and had told him to leave the area.

No charges were filed.

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Steve  Dosh's picture

Homeless man's warming fire put out

all 21:21 HST Monday ( still )
Get more involved . Volunteer . http://wearethe99percent.tumblr.com/
No homeless women or men i know of chooses to be homeless . It just kinda' happens . It is not a conscious choice . Mental illness. Off meds. . Some times it is rooted in D 'n A ( Drugs n Alcohol ) , other times . tobacco and incest , spousal abuse -- things of that nature
Addictive personality behavior disorder patterns
They deserve our help if fo rno other reason than they are human beings and there by the grace of God go us , our families , or our children and grandchildren . It must be hell being homeless in c o l d Maine . Even Canada is more understanding toward this . Many are U S Veterans who turn toward Togus ME VA hospital for help and are , in fact , helped . Like Frank and others have said , many refuse help . We used to find frozen Vets. in their cabins in the springtime . .if animals hadn't gotten to them first , dogs and such • /s Dr. Dosh . HI u s a http://vhv-vetshelpingvets.com/

 's picture

I wish there was a safe, warm place for everyone who needs one.

I don't have any answers. I have heard that some homeless people choose not to go to available shelters or take advantage of the opportunities for help that do exist. I think that a lot of the reasoning behind their choice is either substance abuse or mental illness. A person cannot be forced to do something that he or she chooses not to do. Allowing a homeless person to go ahead and light a fire to stay warm isn't a reasonable answer to this dilemma, however.

O.K. I'll agree with you for a moment ...now what? He's cold...

He's got a match. There's twigs, kindling and a board. You won't let him light a fire.

He's still cold. ... and wet.... for the 100th night this year.

Thank goodness, he thinks between puffs, Thanksgiving is next week and Christmas is only a month or so away....

Brrrrrrrr. It's cold....and his body no longer bothers to shiver.

Wait, if he starts a fire and gets arrested, then he gets a warm cot and a Big Mac!

Now, that's reasoning.

Incidentally, it has nothing to do with "allowing" anything, Ms. Morin.

Mr. Freeze, here, has a "right" to life, including a right to start fires in order to survive cold. He doesn't need our permission. He doesn't need to be "allowed" to light a fire.

He probably doesn't even want to light one.

He has to light one. Just like you have to turn up the thermostat on your furnace.

Therefore, It is just as reasonable for him to start his fire as it is for you to turn up your thermostat.

Isn't it?

Wlith all due respect a fellow Mainer, you probably voted for Lepage and Romney.


Republican for Obama

 's picture

What on Earth are you talking about Henry Bear?

To quote your response to my comment, "With all due respect a fellow Mainer, you probably voted for Lepage and Romney."

Again - what the heck are you talking about and what does who I did or didn't vote for have to do with the comment I made? I do not appreciate being attacked; that was just mean-spirited and absolutely ridiculous.

I will stand by my comment - people just can't go around building fires wherever they find wood. I do wish that there was a warm place for everyone and I don't have the answers.

I also don't go around attacking other people who have made a comment regarding a news story.

Dear "I don't have the answers"

If you don't have an answer, then why are you saying "people just can't go around building fires"?

My response to the article was "an answer" ...and a darn good one, in my view. I proposed a safe, approved method of accommodating those who are out in the cold, especially those that have little other choice.

You, on the other had, offer "no answers".

This guy is probably still out in the cold and, your response, is "I don't have the answers"!!!!!!!!!

Do you even get what you're saying?

I mean, this guy is still going to be cold if we all took your position and told him he "can't", under any circumstances, build his fire.

This is not an attack, as you have characterized my earlier response, Ms. Morin, it is my attempt to offer something constructive to this debate.

Please, do not be offended, as it is not my intention to offend.

If, on the other hand, you did vote for Lepage as Governor and my suggesting that people who voted for him are the kind of people who would leave our poorer or less fortunate fellow Mainers without healthcare, social assistance and reduce unemployment insurance benefits to benefit his more affluent political backers with lower corporate taxes, and without even a placed to build a fire to keep warm, then I apologize for embarrassing you.

Further, if you did not vote for Lepage and still thought it is proper to leave a person out in the Maine cold and deny him a right to build a fire for survival, then I would say, give your head a shake, Lady.

Because, you, in my view, are simply wrong.

Designate fire keeping pits now!

There may be more homeless before things get better. Although, I firmly believe "better" is a frame of mind, sometimes.

Like, things are "better" for the homeless who are cold when the fire department DOES NOT put out their fires.

Things are "better" when the rest of us help them stay warm by organizing places for those who find themselves "out of doors" anytime and anywhere, out of necessity or circumstance, or just plain "choice", where they can build a safe fire from kindling and hardwood provided to these locations, including the trestle and underpass area of our downtown.

Why not?

Make sure there are sand buckets / barrels and strict "no trash burning" rules. There could also be a "call in" number to the local Fire Department to give them the "heads up" as to start and stopping of such fires.

Oh, Yeah. I suppose "No one under 16 or without a supervising adult" sign should be considered, too.

But, don't just put out a cold man's fire!!!!!! Unless you're taking him or her home, too.

We're in Maine, for cripesakes!

We all know how to keep a fire or are willing to learn ...

Republican for "fire keepers"

Diana Currier's picture

too windy

it has been too windy to have a fire, I have been waiting for days. May just have one tonight now it's died down. Most of these homeless over here in Auburn choose to be... amd that would be none of" these Auburn peoples" fault. They probably DID ask him if he wanted shelter and he doesn't, and thats why he left.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

He's been doing this for years....

I'm sure that with his years of burning trash for heat, he knew that the biggest shelter in the area was just a short walk away. Unfortunately, some people, no matter how destitute they are, just want to be left alone, to do their own thing. It's sad but true.....

Randall Pond's picture

Remind me

Never to ask you for help with your Negiative Attitude!

There are there because they want to choose to be BULLPUCKY! NO EVER CHOOSES TO BE HOMELESS, MR. EARLEY!

 's picture

Lots of people choose to be

Lots of people choose to be homeless. You've obviously never lived in a real city. People choose to be homeless for lots of reasons.

Randall Pond's picture

Homeless Man

Why wasn't he taken to a Shelter? What's The Matter with you Auburn People? Huh? Shame On YOU! If he dies from the Cold His Death will be on your hands!

Andrew Jones's picture

If you're so concerned, why

If you're so concerned, why don't you take him in?

Tracy Allen's picture

Because the 2 shelters in

Because the 2 shelters in Lewiston are full. And if you've been there within the last 90 days, you are ineligible to go back. Lewiston's shelter system is nothing like that of Portland, where there is a bed or a chair for everyone to get in out of the cold, and there is no punishment for leaving for a night. Lewiston has limited beds and they're damned picky with whom they put in those beds. It's not uncommon to be turned away at these shelters, even if there IS a bed available.

Randall Pond's picture

Lewiston Shelters

Then if they are doing That and this is True, Tracey, Then those Shelters Should be Shut Down or the City of Lewiston should build one that is NOT Religion Affiliated. I stayed at St. Martin De Poress' Shelter back 2004 and it was a Good Place. And No, Religion Wasn't Shoved down my throat as I have heard happens at. Hope Haven.

 's picture

Better a picky shelter than

Better a picky shelter than no shelter at all. I don't agree with the practices, but since we aren't hearing from the local shelters, we have no idea why those rules exist. They may have a very good reason for doing what their doing.


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