GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.

As the nights get colder, a seemingly invisible population suffers in silence in Grand Junction and that population is growing. City Council member, Abe Herman says, “There are people who are sleeping in this weather, and there are people who are going to die in this weather.” Beverly Lampley with the Grand Valley Coalition for the Homeless says, “There are probably a thousand adults in Mesa County that are homeless. There’s so many children. Our reach program lists 500 children right now.”

On Thursday, the Grand Valley Coalition remembered the lives of the homeless who passed away in the Grand Valley and reminds others the mission continues to end homelessness. “This year, we’ve lost about 20 to 25 people,” said Lampley. Herman says, “There’s a lot of our community that’s one missed paycheck, or one medical situation away from being homeless.”

The memorial also honors 69-year-old Warren Barnes of Grand Junction who was brutally murdered in February. “Warren was homeless, but he made a place for himself in the lives of people,” said Lampley.

The memorial was located on the 4th Street side of Hawthorne Park where a tree and plaque can be observed in remembrance. “We all have our stories, and certainly the folks on the street are no different, and this is a way to honor them,” said Lampley.