After living for 53 years in Savannah, GA, Kimball and her family decided to pack up what they had and move to Asheville, NC. At the time, Kimball’s family included her adult son, Elijah, and their two dogs, Foxy and Magic. They’d wanted to escape the crime that had crept into their working-class neighborhood, and Kimball says that when they saw the mountains on I-26, she knew “We were home.” Kimball found work at a green cleaning business and her son worked as a painter.
Unfortunately, both had their work hours severely cut and started to struggle financially. The physically demanding work also began to take its toll on Kimball’s 55-year-old body. Finally, Elijah decided to move to Seattle. Magic and Foxy stayed with Kimball while Elijah got his feet underneath him.
And then Kimball found out that he had died, tragically.
She says, “When I found out the news, I was destroyed. The only things I have of his are two drums, a few pictures––and the dogs.” And Foxy died shortly after Elijah, leaving Kimball and Magic bereft, struggling with physical difficulties along with emotional devastation. She kept working, but finally lost her job altogether. She lived with roommates, and then on couches, and finally was forced to live out of her car. She and Magic did so for the next eight months.
That was when she realized she needed to find help, and found Homeward Bound’s contact information.
On August 11, 2014, Kimball moved into her new home, a one-bedroom trailer in Woodfin. Kimball says a huge help was getting emotional and practical support from Homeward Bound. “I don’t have the words to say how much an impact this had or how much this support helped me get through the process.”
Kimball says, after this experience, “I feel like I’m back on track. It was a great experience, even thought it was terrible, because it helped me reconnect with peace and hope. It helped me realize that attitude is everything. Elijah always had a heart for homeless people, and he always told me to stand up for myself, and to love myself. This home is the home of my new life.”