ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — For a man who claims to be terrible with names, Bryan Ring seemed to have no trouble last week at the homeless encampment near Sheridan Memorial Park in Minneapolis.
“Hey, Robert,” he said to a man headed to the camp’s portable toilet while wearing just one boot. “How are you doing? Get that boot on!”
He teased Angel Prince about spraining her thumb. “Whatcha been doin’, Angel? Beating up one of the guys in camp again?”
Ring, of Stillwater, had driven over for the day with a pickup truck full of supplies. It was 10 degrees and Ring was prepared. His Ford F-350 pickup truck was packed with sleeping bags, food, hand warmers, propane tanks and winter clothes, neatly labeled in bins. One huge black garbage bag was filled with men’s winter coats; another had sweatshirts.
“Hey, do you need anything?” Ring called out as people began gathering near the back of the truck. “Coat? Hat? Gloves? Mittens? Sweatshirt? Anybody need gloves? Anybody need a laundry bag? I’ve got one left.”
Al Rozier, dressed in shorts and sandals without socks, asked about a “big man’s coat” and thermal long johns. Ring supplied him with both.
“He’s a godsend,” said Rozier. “He does what he can for everyone.”
Ring, who owns Ring Lawn Care in Stillwater, is one of the camp’s favorite aid workers, said Prince, who’s been living in homeless camps for the past six months, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reported.
“He knows what it’s like because he lived like this, too,” Prince said. “The struggle is real. It’s especially hard in winter. And Bryan’s a really great help. He volunteers all over the place. He’s good people.”
Ring, 50, started collecting donations from residents of Stillwater last summer after a visit to...