On this cold December evening, as a group of citizens in this Anchorage community gather in a little downtown park, I remember a March night in 1983. Three teenagers, Samantha, Kris and I were somewhere in the Tennessee hills, on a Trailways bus, leaving behind chaos and confusion, bad parents, bad friends, bad lives, heading for something, anything better.
The boarded up house on Anchorage’s East Third Avenue was too wretched to imagine people ever living there, people who kept the lawn mowed and put out the trash every week. Walls stripped and weeping moisture, it emitted a rot that burned the nose and turned the stomach.
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