By now, you’ve probably heard about the man in Ohio dubbed as the “homeless man with the golden voice.” Fifty-three-year-old Ted Williams had been homeless for a decade due to drug and alcohol problems. Today, he is two years sober, but has not been able to break out of the cycle of homelessness. That is until a Columbus Dispatch cameraman videotaped Ted speaking in his radio voice as he begged for money on an Ohio highway, holding a sign that touted his “radio voice” as a God-given talent. In fact, Ted had worked in broadcasting prior to his downfall. The video went viral on YouTube, getting more than 11 million hits.
As a result, job offers began pouring in to Ted. During an appearance on NBC’s Today Show, he told how thankful he was to be getting a second chance. But most of all, he exclaimed that his life will be different now, because “This time I have God.” He was also reunited with his 90-year-old mother after a decade long separation.
Ted’s amazing story is but one example of the personal stories that flourish among this nation’s homeless population. As President & CEO of the Detroit Rescue Mission Ministries (DRMM), I see extraordinary talent of all sorts in the people who come through our programs. There are musicians, singers, writers, artists, and much more among our clients. In most cases, they possessed the talent, but they got diverted on the wrong path in life. That’s why it is important to DRMM to embrace the talents of the homeless and disadvantaged and provide them with the educational and vocational skills needed to secure jobs and escape poverty permanently.
As Ted Williams’ story illustrates, everyone deserves another chance to live life as a productive and honorable human being, just as God would have us to do.