Yellow Ribbon program seeks to help Manatee’s homeless veterans

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BY JAMES A. JONES JR.

Barry is 58 years old. He sometimes sleeps in the park, sometimes in the woods. Barry served honorably in the U.S. military.

He has a bedroll, a bike, a cell phone and not much else. He also has a pain in his upper abdomen that seems to be getting worse. It may be pancreatic cancer.

Dennis Turner, program manager for The Yellow Ribbon Program, which seeks to provide shelter for homeless vets, and volunteer Dan O’Connell, a Marine Corps veteran from the Vietnam War, have been trying for months to bring Barry in from the streets.

They want to get him into a treatment program at Bay Pines VA Healthcare System in St. Petersburg. They want to help put a roof over his head.

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