This is Sammy Thompson. Though I knew him the better part of a decade and he was one of my closest friends, I never knew his last name. Nor, I think, did anyone else I recall ever meeting. He was one of eight kids to die last December in a squat-fire in New Orleans, New Orleans’ deadliest fire in 30 years. Although he had been the longest to live in New Orleans, his was the last body to be identified at the morgue.
This article, that a mutual friend sent me, has thus far been the most in-depth account of what actually occurred that horrible night, as well as being the first feature I’ve read that actually attempts to understand the squatter life-style.. to get inside the minds of these kids and try and figure out what it is that makes us choose to turn our back on traditional society and instead reinvent our own destiny. For anyone seeking to understand streetkids or even get a better understanding of who we’re trying to help here at The Space At Tompkins, this article is a MUST READ.
R.I.P. Sammy.. We all love and miss you.
-Ian, Stephanie, and all your other friends who i know are thinking of you..