Oct. 10–For nearly a week, a gentleman has sat on the lawn of the Rush County Courthouse. He rarely speaks unless spoken to; he is not asking for anything other than passersby to notice him and the sign attached to a nearby cart asking for awareness to homeless American Veterans.
For nearly three-years, Hoosier Timothy Watt has made a visual albeit silent presence throughout the state to draw awareness to the needs and plight of American Veterans. With only a few interruption’s, Watt originally from Gary, has spent a week in each of the state’s 92 counties, two weeks in the larger communities to covey his message.
Watt began the trip throughout the state in November 2014 and had hoped to complete the journey in two years.
His journey has been in his words, an amazing experience. He said as a whole, the people he has encountered along the way have been very kind and generous. He said he doesn’t ask for anything — only that people notice him and the perils facing many veterans living homeless throughout the state and elsewhere.
He gives the majority of money he has been given in each county to nine charities he adopted prior to moving on to the next county.
“This is the 91st county I have been in and I have one more to go to. I will be leaving here Wednesday and go to Shelby County which will be the 92nd county I will have visited since I began this journey,” Watt said Monday.
Watt, 58, spent three years in the United State Marine Corps, enlisting following high school.
“I joined the USMC in June 1977 and served actively for three years, followed by three years of inactive duty before I was released in 1982. Although I did not see any active duty, I was and am proud to have served my country,” Watt said.
It was that sense of pride and duty that called him to undertake what he originally though would be a two-year event. Although sidetracked a couple of times he will complete his veterans’ awareness campaign ending where it all began in downtown Indianapolis in a couple of weeks.
His journey began in November of 2014 when he sat for a week in the states’ capital at the intersection of Market Street and Illinois Street before making a trip to each of Indiana’s 92 counties. In the states larger cites Watt has extended his stay and spent two weeks as a means to get his message across.
Throughout the event, he has only had to walk entirely from one county to another twice; New Castle to Richmond and from Versailles to North Vernon. In each other county, a citizen has offered to drive him all or at least part of the way.
He said he spends “bad weather days” inside as much as possible and frequents local libraries as a means to use their computers and update his Facebook page.
“I won’t say that I am not looking forward to being done, three years is a long time and I really don’t like living this way but I just felt I needed to do something.”
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