A Better Life for Stanley

When I first moved up to New York City, I couldn’t believe how many people were living in poverty. When the cold set in and I’d walk past people sleeping in makeshift tents on my way to wherever I was going, I realized that things are not as good as they should be. I’ve always been fortunate enough to come from a good family and have a good support system around me, but not everybody has that. In the end, we’re all only a few unforeseeable life events away from being on the other side of the tracks.

It’s not every day that you meet somebody like Stanley Ellertsen. Before he was living in poverty, Stanley had a good career programming computers, and a wife. During the time that they were trying to conceive and start a family, he lost his wife to a 6-month battle with cancer. Shortly after, he also lost both of his parents - all within a 2-year span and that completely broke him as a person. From then on, he struggled with drug addiction, lost his job, and ended up on the streets.

After all these years and obstacles that he’s faced, he remains positive and keeps a smile on his face. He shares any food or money that he gets with the other folks living on the streets of NYC and remembers to laugh and take each day as it comes. After years of drug abuse, Stanley is now clean and lives in low-income housing in New York City.

Stanley’s story shows that bad stuff can happen to good people, and that sometimes life just throws too many curveballs at a person. I understood from the beginning that writing a song about an issue doesn’t necessarily make things better or fix the world’s problems, but I wanted to use this opportunity to try and at least help one person in need. I’ve started a GoFundMe page to raise money for Stanley. 100% of the money that is raised will go directly to paying Stanley’s medical bills for his arthritis surgery, as well as upgrading his quality of life with a new walker or electric scooter if we can raise enough money.

Times are tough, and it’s understandable if you aren’t in a situation to donate any money, but any bit or even sharing this video and passing it along with others goes a long way in spreading awareness of the issue that is present in our world.


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Leon Majcen 
Clearwater, FL
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