Remembering Leroy

Dear Liza,

I love that our city has a Street Art Association that helps local artists create murals on the walls of our stores. The SSA has helped create dozens of murals filled with history and art.

And today I got to see a beautiful new example. On the west wall of our little Belmont Market, some folks were painting a memorial to Leroy Sly Scott, a homeless man who lived in our neighborhood for almost thirty years. In my conversations with him, we talked about life, God, and goodness.

Leroy and his bust sculpted by the late Jim Gion

This past year, Leroy became very sick and was taken in by some kind neighbors. In his last weeks he rested peacefully, in a warm bed with a roof over his head. He passed away knowing that he was not alone.

Leroy’s portrait was designed and painted by Kyra Watkins and the lettering was designed by Alicia Schultz and painted by some of Leroy’s friends. The lettering spells out Leroy’s favorite quote from a Digital Underground song, and says, “All around the world, same song.”

As I stood chatting with the painters, a traffic officer stopped by to tell them they had to move their vans, which were parked in a loading zone. Everyone was pleasant, but the officer was very clear. “I have to see you move them.”

Later, as the sun was going down, the work was almost done.

I will walk over today and see how it turned out, and think about Leroy, and God, and goodness.

Love,

Grandma Judy

Author: Judy

I am a new transplant to Portland from Salinas, a small city in Central California. This is a blog about my new city.

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