Marie Elizabeth Haist was born in Los Angeles in 1925. Her life started out pretty conventionally. But when she divorced in her fifties, the suburban housewife lost her home, began living in her van and wound up on the streets.
She slept outside Bullock's Westwood. She ate food thrown out by restaurants. Eventually, she found her way to Fox Laundry on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica, where the owner let her sleep at night for nearly 20 years.
Haist, who is known as Mimi, is the subject of a new documentary, "Queen Mimi," which opens Friday in Santa Monica. It tells the story of her unusual life -- including how she became friends with comedian and actor Zach Galifianakis when he did his wash at the laundromat before he made it big.
A few years ago, Galifianakis rented Mimi an apartment, across the street from the laundry. Actor Renee Zellweger, who met Mimi through him, furnished the three small rooms.
Read the whole story about Mimi, known as the Queen of Montana Avenue.
Here's a photo version of the story, told tweet by tweet on Twitter.