Bulls, Trucks, and the Long Road Home
If you’ve come to Christ’s Body in the last year-and-a-half, chances are Donny is one of the first people you met. He has been a resident living at Christ’s Body since April 2017.
Donny had a career on the bull riding rodeo circuit over his career he has broken 108 bones. Donny has traded riding bulls for bike riding these days, but still has managed to break his ankle this past year slipping on ice, and broke his knee when a car hit him while riding his bike to church. Even with these setbacks this year, Donny has managed to keep his sense of humor and it hasn’t slowed him teasing people in his good-hearted way.
Donny has had many jobs over the years and he utilizes many of his professional skills here at Christ’s Body Ministries, one that we all particularly love is his chef skills. He has made many meals for our guests, our staff and cooked for most of our special events. Donny is always working hard, willing to do anything asked of him, and best of all does it cheerfully. With Donny’s many talents, it makes you wonder, how did he end up homeless? Donny had a heartbreaking event in his life that took him down a tough road and a long path back to recovery.
In 1988 Donny’s wife of 11 years and his 7-year-old daughter were killed while driving in Garden City, Kansas during a tornado. Being unable to cope with the pain of this loss, Donny went on a year-long alcohol bender. A friend helped him get into a program to get cleaned up and back on his feet with a job as a truck driver for 14 years. He had to give up on this career when he developed a peripheral vision issue. Donny came to Denver and for this first time in his life became homeless. After a few years, he came up with the idea of starting a scrap metal company and got himself off the streets. Unfortunately, that came to an end after a couple of years because of getting into business with some unsavory characters. He returned to the streets again.
Donny has been a Christian for most of his life, but after his wife and daughter died, he wasn’t talking to God for a while. Right before Donny had to retire from trucking, he started talking to God again.
God brought Donny to Christ’s Body where people saw Donny, took notice of his work ethic and friendly demeanor. Pastor Jim soon invited Donny into the resident community and Donny hasn’t looked back. Donny isn’t exactly sure what the future holds but believes God has a plan for Him. Currently, Donny is apartment hunting with a newly acquired section 8 housing voucher. “God blessed me with so many people and mentors in my life,” he is confident God will show him the next step in life.