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A life well lived on the streets

A life well lived on the streets
Joseph Trotter, seen here with his daughter Tiffany, died last month. He lived in Little Tokyo.

To the editor: I am surprised that your "big and famous" paper would take the time to notice one human being who quietly made such a difference for so many people. I salute Steve Lopez for taking an interest in the death of Joseph Trotter, a homeless man who lived in Little Tokyo. ("Little Tokyo mourns a homeless man whose 'spirit would shine,'" Jan. 20)

A story like this often gets lost among the big news events of the day. But this is where life is, down in the streets, where humanity is being passed by everyday.

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Sure, I've gone to skid row to pass out sandwiches before, doing it as fast as I can to avoid the smells. Now, I wish I had taken time to really understand the lives of these men and women.

Like Trotter, homeless people just don't take from society; they give back in so many ways. My hat's off to Lopez for his column. He should continue to help us never to forget.

Kathie Pereda, San Dimas

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To the editor: Thanks to Lopez for a special tribute to Trotter and his dog Cookie.

I usually read the articles in The Times through a few paragraphs to get the gist of it, and if it doesn't hold my interest I go to the next one. There is a format that writers usually follow: First comes the summary, then the history and finally the outcome.

But Lopez's simple way of talking about the life of one man touched a place that is seldom awakened. I read every word and contemplated my own life in new ways.

Thanks, Mr. Lopez.

Elizabeth Keranen, Bakersfield

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To the editor: Thanks to Lopez for his compassionate article about Trotter. The humanity in someone we would usually walk past came through brightly.

All humans matter, and our society needs to think about "how we treat the least of us." Trotter's life was enriched by people he encountered, as were theirs.

Carl Swallow, Rancho Mission Viejo 

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