Jennifer Hayes, right, of Auburn confirms that the winter coat she gave Bob Wilson fits well during “Feed the Hungry: Stockings for the Homeless” in Lewiston’s Kennedy Park on Friday. Hayes and her sister, Amy Hayes, handed out Christmas stockings, gloves, hats and food to those in need on the sixth-year anniversary of their father’s death. “We do something every year in his memory,” said Hayes. Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

LEWISTON —Jennifer Hayes knows that cans of food can be warmed over a small flame.

“Not even going to open it,” Deborah Hale said about the Christmas stocking she was given during “Feed the Hungry: Stockings for the Homeless” in Lewiston’s Kennedy Park on Friday. “That’s for Christmas.” Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

She also knows that a person can eat straight from the can.

“I was homeless once,” said Hayes as she handed out hats, gloves, Christmas stockings and cans of food to a long line of people in Lewiston’s Kennedy Park on Friday.

“Seven years I spent out there. It was a struggle,” said Hayes.

Hayes and her sister, Amy Hayes, held “Feed the Hungry: Stockings for the Homeless” on Friday, six years to the day following their father’s death. “It was Friday the 13th when dad died as well,” said Hayes.

“We do something every year in his memory.”

“We did not know what to expect,” Amy said when she pulled up to Kennedy Park shortly before the 1 p.m. event start time.

Bob Wilson walks away from Kennedy Park with two Christmas stockings and a used winter coat in Lewiston on Friday. Wilson and about 60 others were given items such as winter hats, gloves, food and Christmas stockings during “Feed the Hungry: Stockings for the Homeless.” Daryn Slover/Sun Journal Buy this Photo

The line of 50 to 60 people confirmed that the need for hats, gloves, hygiene items and food was there. The Christmas stockings were a bonus. “They deserve a Christmas too,” Hayes said of those who don’t have a home of their own for the holidays.

“Gloves, a hat, the works now,” Bob Wilson said after looking in his stocking.

“Not even going to open it,” Deborah Hale said about her stocking. “That’s for Christmas.”

“I have a pair of gloves, a hat and a sweatshirt. I’m fine for now,” she added.

Now that Hayes no longer lives on the streets, she’s fine as well.

“Life is grand now. Now I want to give back,” she said.


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