Nomad Nancy Update

     Nancy is still homeless -  still living on the ground in a Fort Lauderdale park.

     Two weeks ago, I introduced you to Nancy. She has disabilities, is a hopeless alcoholic, and has been homeless since her mother died, and the house was sold.
     She has been living in the city park for about 6 months, rain or shine. This morning, on my regular morning walk, I checked to see if anything had been done about Nancy.


     It hasn't.

     After I informed officials about Nancy weeks ago, I figured the professionals would swoop in and find the right place for Nancy. Unfortunately, I was wrong.

      Instead, I was copied on this e-mail from some of those officials,  just yesterday - 

     Phil and Sandi, as a f/u on this the Rangers checked the park last few day for
this person they were not in the park at the time we checked.

Gerald Roberts

Captain Park Rangers
Public Safety Liaison
Parks & Rec Administration
City of Fort Lauderdale 

I called again yesterday, and they asked me to meet with a Park Ranger. I agreed, offering to lead him to Nancy's lair. 


     Nancy stays just behind the 6th Silver Buttonwood tree, off the highway - we could see her from the parking lot as the Officer was taking the report. The Ranger took it seriously, and I hope he can bring in the right resources.

     Anyhow, on my way back home, I came across Nancy leaving her lair, undoubtedly for her first breakfast beer. She was with another girl, Tammy, who has now joined Nancy in park life. Yikes!


     Nancy told me she has been molested, been sogged from the rain, has no circulation in her legs, has trouble talking, but still resides here on a dirty blanket, on the ground, under the 6th Silver Buttonwood tree............

                         Is this the best we can do?    

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  • 1/8/2013 12:23 PM Ginnee wrote:
    Thank you for what you are doing for Nancy and others who are disabled, homeless and with issues. She probably does qualify, she just needs to get qualified and assisted. Thanks Tim, thanks for all that you do.
    Reply to this
  • 1/8/2013 1:40 PM Marge wrote:
    And where do these two citizens urinate and defecate? Isn't this a health risk? Would this happen in Rio Vista? I think every resident of Middle River Terrace should complain to the City. Handicapped people have rights, but so do self-supporting folks.
    Reply to this
  • 1/8/2013 1:59 PM Sam wrote:
    Let me guess- this park is NOT located in Rio Vista or the Isles, right Tim???
    This city has got to grow some kahuna's and deal with the issue with vengance-I understand the homeless have rights,it's not a crime to be homeless,blah, blah, blah, but these folks that don't want help,and literally squat and trash neighborhoods have gotta be dealt with- why don't a bunch of us taxpayers give up our responsibilities,and live off the land, compliments of the City of Fort Lauderdale - how about a pajama party in Ponce de Leon park, starting this weekend????!!
    Reply to this
  • 1/8/2013 11:02 PM Danielle wrote:
    Wow, these comments above are from people with no compassion for people with obvious mental issues. Instead of trying to get help for Nancy they just spend time making fun of a sad situation without understanding the reason for why these people are in this condition......Karma sometimes come back to you folks...
    Reply to this
  • 1/9/2013 5:30 AM Dennis Ulmer wrote:
    Homelessness in NOT a crime. That being said, we do have park rules, and parks are closed at the posted hour. (I think it's 9 P.M.) Many people with problems such as Nancy do not want help. At least not the kind of help that comes with rules and regulations. It's not a simple problem. It's too bad that more people in this situation do not get assessed and get benefits that they may qualify for, and go on to have a better life with housing and medical care. We can not force people in our free society to do so however. So for some, their are no solutions to being homeless. You could force them into some kind of homeless assistance program, but they would not continue to or follow up on the path to getting benefits or long term heath care. They are unfortunately the chronic homeless.
    Reply to this
    1. 1/9/2013 6:16 PM Marie wrote:
      Unfortunately, Dennnis is right. There are very few remedies if the person doesn't want to voluntarily go for services. If she is a danger to herself or others, she can be Baker Acted. If she has any other family interested in helping, they may be able to use the Marchman Act. Both are short term in the hope that once sober, she may agree to services or the Court (Marchman) can court order her to treatment.
      Reply to this
  • 1/10/2013 9:52 AM Mary Pat Rhodes wrote:
    Homelessness is an enormously multifaceted social problem that impacts the quality of life in our community. There are no simple clear solutions. Many of these people are on our streets because of mental illness, substance abuse or both. Habitually the illness issues associated with homelessness are criminal in nature but difficult to enforce. To assist this “at risk” population the FLPD has created the Homeless Outreach Team. The team consists of two people and these two wonderful people can’t match the enormous population.

    While homeless is not a crime, many kinds of public behaviors are illegal and should be reported to the FLPD. These include being public intoxicated, prowling, fighting, trespassing, aggressive panhandling, soliciting (prostitution), urinating and defecating, sleeping in parks, littering, behaving in a threatening manner, etc.

    Because many of these crimes committed by homeless people are misdemeanors, a police officer can only arrest a person if the offense is committed in his presence. What is the likelihood that a police officer will arrive in time to catch someone urinating?

    Nancy is basically alone now, but shortly will start gaining others in her same predicament (i.e. Tammy). I talked to a group (community) of homeless that sleep in Holiday Park. Dougie sleeps with a group along the fence line of the old Auto Toy Store. During the day the split up and the evenings they return to sleep in a group for safety and protection. Dougie has faced many challenges. He was robbed and has no identification. With no identification he can’t get food stamps. Dougie swears up and down he doesn’t drink as his mother raised a good boy, if he drinks Dougie says he flops around like a fish. Sadly, I have witnessed him has seizures from his too many beers.

    Alexandria “Lexie” Sladon Marler (aka Heidi) is off the streets now. Lexie’s back story is sad. She was in a car accident at the age of 15 with serve head injuries. These head injuries combined with mental illness and self-medication led Lexie on a horrific journey.
    Last spring, I asked Lexie if she was pregnant. She replied “I cirrhosis of the liver”. Late summer Lexie gave birth to a baby boy in a hotel and allegedly placed the baby in the garbage. The judge hearing this case stated he told Lexie not go back to the 7-11 store 5 times and she did comply. Lexie is in jail awaiting trial.

    Our homeless use two forms of help, the jail or hospital system. Both are very short term solutions that place them back on the street in a matter of days. There has to be a better way. There needs to be a better way!
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  • 3/31/2014 2:24 PM Brittany wrote:
    Does anyone know "Lexi's" status as of 04/2014? I was best friends with her in my mid teens. I made the choice to end our friendship based on the path she was taking in her life. Any info would be much appreciated.
    Reply to this
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