Chester County Commemorates National Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day with service remembering 13 who died without a home in 2021

Thirteen candles represent 13 individuals without homes who passed away in 2021 in Chester County.

Chester County joined communities across the nation Tuesday in remembering those who died in 2021 without a place to call home.

Just before sundown on what would be the longest night of the year, members of the Chester County community gathered in front of the Historic Chester County Courthouse to hear the names slowly read of the 13 individuals who passed away while living on the street. A pause of silence between each name allowed for a time of contemplation.

Chester County Commissioners’ Chair Marian Moskowitz read from a proclamation on behalf of herself and fellow Commissioners Josh Maxwell and Michelle Kichline, saying, “In the season of generosity and sharing, Chester County citizens are encouraged to commit themselves to exhibiting compassion and concern for all, particularly during the winter months that pose extreme hardship for citizens who are less fortunate and without homes.”

The proclamation noted that on any given night 500 people in Chester County experience homelessness, and that hunger and homelessness remain a serious challenge even in Pennsylvania’s wealthiest county.

Rob Henry, administrator of the Chester County Partnership to End Homelessness, hosted the event, saying, “We must all work together to strive to create a community where no one’s life ends in homelessness.

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