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|December 26, 1985|
|Mom: Help Me Find My Son|
by Dennis Hevesi
|The mother of Gary Doe, the Columbia Law School graduate who has been wandering the city streets since May, has appealed to New Yorkers to help bring her son home. |
In a conference call from Alabama to a group of reporters on Christmas Eve, the man's mother said, "I believe what you all are doing will save my son's life. We can't have a merry Christmas without him here."
Fourteen of his Columbia and Harvard University classmates have been leading the search for Gary Doe (not his real name). Doe, 28, became deeply depressed seven months ago after he failed the Florida bar examination for a second time and broke up with his longtime girlfriend.
His friends have spotted him on the street from time to time. But, partly because of legal difficulties, they cannot just take him in on their own.
Recently, woth the approval of Doe's mother, the group enlisted the aid of George McDonald, an advocate for the homeless, and obtained a warrant empowering police to bring Doe before a judge.
With his legal expertise, however, Gary might effectively argue his right to remain homeless. After graduating from Harvard in 1979, he received his law degree from Columbia in 1982 and was earning $42,000 a year with a Miami law firm when he failed the bar exam.
In May, Rachel Kemp, a classmate from Harvard, spotted Gary on an East Side street, eating out of a garbage can. In October she saw him again. "It was obvious that he was in great pain," Kemp said.
It was Kemp who enlisted Doe's classmates in the hunt for him. Despite his condition, she notes, he can be articulate about his right to stay on the streets. He has already refused at least one removal attempt.
Gary, who is black, is 6 feet 5 and weighs between 170 and 200 pounds. Anyone spotting him is asked to call the Police Missing Persons Bureau at (212) 374-6913.
Asked what she would say to her son if she could, Gary's mother said, "Gary, get out of the street and get some help. We love you very much and want you to come home."
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