Two dimes and a nickel: Cold kills homeless Bitterroot man

Perry Backus

Two weeks ago, Stefani Jackson’s phone rang.

She picked it up to hear the voice of the man she knew only as Jack on the line.

Jackson had met Jack a couple of years ago when she first started her nonprofit Laundry Love Hamilton program to help the homeless pay for their laundry.

“He came up to me and said he wanted to help,” Jackson remembered. “He reached into his pocket and pulled out two dimes and a nickel. I thought I shouldn’t take it because I knew it was all he had.”

But she could see from the look in his eyes how important it was to him to be able to give.

Over the years, she got to know Jack and appreciate his compassion for others.

In the middle of the first week of November, Jackson received her first call from Missoula’s St. Patrick Hospital. Jack was on the line.

He told Jackson he wasn’t going to make it that week to do his laundry.

“He said he didn’t want to worry me but he was in the hospital,” she said.

Jack had decided to try to walk from Hamilton to Missoula to get medical treatment for his feet and hands that

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