ALPENA, Mich — The polar plunge has put much of the nation below freezing. Arctic temperatures have forced shelters across the state and locally to house people without a permanent home — places like the Sunrise Mission of Alpena.
Resident Anthony Cramer powers an amp and connects it to his electric guitar. “Most of the time because of the genre that I play, everyone’s like ‘woah!’ how are you doing that man?” says Cramer. The chords come easy to him.
“People do not expect talent from me being in here,” says Cramer. He lives inside of a homeless shelter.
“We’re not all bad,” says Timothy Allen, “it’s just we hit a rough patch in our life and we’re just trying to make it through” some of life’s toughest lows.
The Sunrise Mission has followed behind Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s emergency declaration. “We encourage them not to go outside for the next couple days to stay in and stay warm,” says house executive director Leslie Scheen.
“You can be homeless in 80 degree weather or negative 5 degree weather. The weather does not care about you being homeless, ” says Allen. As a second timer at the shelter, Allen knows that all storms pass. “The only way through it is forward. Keep your head up.”