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Meal, parade cause for thanks in Houston

Where William Laduex Jr. living in a deserted 18-wheel off Airline Drive – barbers are hard to come with, and…

Where William Laduex Jr. living in a deserted 18-wheel off Airline Drive – barbers are hard to come with, and despite his reluctance to the hair, it was a little 60-year-old could do as the head and face was covered in a fat gray man.

Until Thursday when he sat in a chair at the George R. Brown Convention Center, while Rina Diaz slowly steered a pair of cliffs into Louisiana’s native face.

Soon He was balmy, well-behaved and happier, surrounded by thousands of people who arrived at ccnter for free Thanksgiving meals, clothes and on-fly grooming.

Every Thanksgiving and Christmas, The City Wide Club of Houston turns Congress Center into a one-stop shop for the less fortunate, offering help with social services and displaying donated clothes and hot meals to an estimated 20,000.

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1; including Riaz – who provided free cuts at Grace United Methodist Church on the third Monday of each month. The crew sent at least 100 people’s hair on Thursday, according to the group’s owner Casey Miller.

“It’s great fun to see some of the transformations,” Miller said about Laduex.

He welcomed the opportunity as well. A sneaker through training split Laduex both feet a few months ago after falling from a canopy he built.

A doctor told him he would probably never go again, but he is a honorable Mennonite with a creed: “Just keep living.”

Thursday the first time he could move without a wheelchair, he said He is trying to save $ 380 to move into a motel room with a friend next month. It has been harder than he guessed. Back in Louisiana, he said that he could often offer cleaning porches or doing other odd jobs to feed or grab his head.

People have been less welcome here, he said.

“They do not even look at you,” he said with a thoughtful Cajun accent. “They look down on you.”

Still, he is optimistic.

“God gives,” he said.

For others, the free hairstyles and meals are just an advantage. The annual event gives a much needed respite from the daily congestion of poverty and is a chance to see old friends.

That’s why John Brown and Michael Grant left dominoes and bingo that usually fills their days in Pleasantville, and hoped for a train downtown.

“It gives us a chance to mix and mingle,” said Grant, 48. “Many of these people could not have a Thanksgiving meal or be with people. It’s a blessing.”

It’s Just what Thanksgiving is about Chance Landry and other Indians. Earlier this day, she helped lead Houston’s annual Thanksgiving parade downtown, with mayor Sylvester Turner, Astros Jose Altuve and Rocket’s superstar James Harden.

She has been commissioned to train Houstonians on local Indians – an “invisible people” of about 68,000 – through the Southern Apache Museum, which she founded and ran at the Northwest Mall until the mall closed.

“We live. We are fine. We speak our language and eat their own personal foods thousands of years ago and still do our dances and sing our songs, and most do not know that,” she said. “Most people only live in his own little world. “

Still looking for a building to house his museum, Landry and other local Indians decided to march in the parade this year for the first time.

” We felt like putting ourselves in the public and say that not all Indians hate Thanksgiving, “she said.” We have done it or thousands of years and it’s time to take it back and celebrate with others because we should be prime and central. “

Not all Indians are so famous on Thanksgiving, she said, noting the bloody story of the holiday. But Landry is more busy with messages about goodwill and inclusion.

“Indian Americans have always helped people,” she said. “It’s one of our moves. “We are a rewarding kind of people.”

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