Michael’s eyes sparkle as he laughs while counting off the number of occupations he’s sweated through in his lifetime. He says he was as a firefighter, certified welder, diesel electrician, maintenance worker, a railroad man and helped build the light rail system in Sacramento, too.
Michael says he was drafted in 1969 and went to Vietnam to fight “the good fight” in the war and try to stay alive. This proved difficult when a commanding officer told him because of his wiry thin frame and winning high school wrestling record he was going to become a tunnel rat.
“They wanted me to go down into the holes and crawl through the tunnels that ran under the jungle and get the enemy to come up out of there,” Michael says. “I lost half of my high school graduating class in the Vietnam war.”
Michael lives in Guest House now and likes the programs they offer. Their outreach to the homeless community helps him stay busy and give back. Guest House is a recovery center for people who are displaced or who are working their way back from addictions or have just come out of lockup Michael says.
“Last week I volunteered and worked in the kitchen here at Friendship Park to help feed people. I also volunteered at Winter Sanctuary last year too — I’m transitioning into a better place,” Michael says.