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Raising awareness of rural homelessness

Event spotlights those who are ‘precariously housed’

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ABOVE: Shelly, left, and Tony Auske’s struggles with homelessness were outlined Thursday at an awareness event at the Holland Theatre. FRONT PAGE PHOTO: 151 lighted candles represented the number of “precariously housed” Logan County residents in 2010. (EXAMINER PHOTOS | NATE SMITH)

Shelly Auske and her husband, Tony, have experienced homelessness together a couple times in their 31 years, and they credit local social service agencies for helping them secure permanent housing.

Soon after they finally had found a place to live following a three-year stint of bouncing from place to place, Mr. Auske had a stroke and had to live in a long-term care facility for more than a year, Mrs. Auske said Thursday to a crowd gathered at the Holland Theatre to raise awareness of homelessness in Logan County.

The couple had only about six months’ worth of income from insurance benefits, and once that dried up, Mrs. Auske had to move out of the three-bedroom house they’d been renting.

She credits the Recovery Zone, 123 N. Detroit St., with helping her find a place to live, which allowed her husband to move out of the care facility.

“We spent our 30th anniversary while he was in the nursing home,” she said, “but the people at Recovery Zone helped me in every way to get a place to stay so Tony could come home.

“I hope no one else has to go through what we went through.”

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