Bruce was born in the Bronx and raised in Harlem, the second oldest of four brothers. He grew up in a single-parent household and worked odd jobs starting as a teenager to help his mother make ends meet.

At age 21, he moved out of his mother’s apartment and in with his girlfriend after having their first child.

After living with the mother of his children for over twenty years, Bruce’s relationship with her had deteriorated to the point where he had to move out. To make matters worse, he had recently been hurt at work and was on disability. In 2015, as soon as Bruce left his apartment, he began a three-year journey of homelessness.

Once homeless, Bruce lived in Grand Central, Penn Station, his car and various other places in the city.

”I always tried to keep moving, it was the most difficult thing to do every day.“ says Bruce. Though street homeless, he kept up his appearance, and never told his family. He would clean up at a hostel his brother worked at and at a garage his friend owned. “I would go to family functions and everyone would be so happy and carefree, while I was worrying about where I would sleep that night.”

In August of 2018, Bruce finally told his family that he was homeless. Coincidentally, his brother was a former client at Urban Pathways who had been homeless and received housing. Bruce’s brother referred him Urban Pathways to meet with Housing and Outreach Specialist Hilton Douglas.

Once Bruce met Hilton, he was referred to Urban Pathways’ Outreach in Port Authority. In less than a month, Hilton called Bruce and informed him that he had been selected for housing in Urban Pathways’ Hallet’s Cove Residence, in Queens. “When I got that call from Urban Pathways, my entire life changed for the better.”

Bruce lived at Hallet’s Cove for over 3 years. While there, he was able to work on improving his health by becoming more active, riding his bike, and going to the neighborhood park. He had also been able to strengthen his relationships with his two children. His teenage son visited him every two weeks and he kept in regular contact with his daughter and grandchildren who live in South Carolina. “My kids are my rock, I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for them. In my darkest moments they kept be going.”

2021 Update

Sadly, we regret to inform that Bruce passed away in late 2020. He is survived by his daughter, son, and grandchildren.

Bruce was a friend to everyone at Hallet’s Cove and was a kind-hearted soul. He helped me when get acclimated when I moved in. He will be missed. -Loren, Resident at Hallet’s Cove and Neighbor

About Urban Pathways

Urban Pathways is a New York City-based, nonprofit organization that provides housing and support to homeless and at-risk adults throughout the Metropolitan area. Urban Pathways serves more than 3,700 homeless individuals a year and provides transitional, extended stay, and permanent housing to chronically homeless individuals.