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Dozens attend curbside memorial of DC homeless man

September 6, 2019

WASHINGTON (AP) — Dozens of people gathered outside a Washington, D.C., department store to honor the life of a homeless man who claimed that space as his own.

The Washington Post reports the Rev. Linda M. Kaufman led the Thursday service for 45-year-old Bernard “Chino” Dean Jr., who died last week. Attendees described Dean as lively, passionate and “a hell of a soccer player.”

Brian Carome is the executive director of Street Sense Media, a nonprofit that publishes a newspaper sold by homeless people. He said Dean once worked for the organization, but struggles with mental illness made him disruptive.

Public records show Dean, originally from New Jersey, had a criminal history, including being convicted of child molestation in 1992. His cousin, Jason Dean, says Dean was a veteran whose bad marriage “made him lose his mind.”

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