Vigil honors more than 110 homeless people who died in 2017
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah officials say more than 110 homeless and formerly homeless residents have died in the past year.
Elected leaders, advocates, volunteers and more than 100 community members gathered to honor their deaths at an annual vigil on Thursday.
It is the largest number of homeless deaths in Utah in the past decade.
Homeless advocate Pamela Atkinson says 46 of the people died while living on the streets, and 70 died after moving into a home or hospice setting.
The average age of the dead was 55. The oldest was 86-year-old Frank Gomillion. The youngest was 11.
Dozens of women and eight veterans were among the dead.
Gov. Gary Herbert marked the event by declaring Dec. 21 as Homeless Persons’ Memorial Day.