Jon Forsyth, who was recently found dead in Boulder Creek after apparently dying of natural causes, was present at the Boulder Creek Library’s 25th Anniversary celebration. He was interviewed in September along with other Boulder Creek residents who were giving their comments about the library. John can be seen at 01:07 on the video.
A man with a sign on the side of the road-
I passed him by so many times.
I knew him somewhat.
He lived at the ranch where my children spent much of their younger lives.
He kept mostly to himself, yet would often converse if someone would just take the time or give him the chance.
The ranch was lost to those who provided him a place to stay.
He was afraid for his future he had relayed to me on one of the occasions when I gave him a ride to town.
I had thought ‘something will come up ,it is rarely as dark as we imagine’.
This was in the early summer of 2010 May or June.
I had heard last night from one of my children that he had been found dead in a creek.
I had thought this must be someone else. I had just seen him (or thought anyway).
In checking for more on this I found the following:
Man found dead in creek
The body of a local transient was found in the Boulder Creek near Highway 9 just before 7 p.m. Thursday, authorities reported.
Sheriff’s deputies said the man, in his 30s, appeared to have died from natural causes and there was no indication of foul play.
Friends who had gone to visit the man and knew he frequented the area found him in the creek, according to deputies.
Authorities say they think they know who the man is but need to confirm the identity.
Deputies are continuing to investigate the death.
A later story confirmed it was indeed John.
This affected me deeply.
This poor soul had tried reaching out directly to me. I had shrugged it off and thought things would get better for him. I saw him many times after the rides I had provided. standing by the side of the road with a sign stating “will work for food”.
Did I stop?
I was uncomfortable.
I had assumed he was living somewhere, a rented room, a shared residence, somewhere.
He apparently was not. He was “camping”.
Doing the best he could to survive.
That struggle for survival came to an end at the beginning of October in 2010.
Just before the rains.
I had not even known his last name until searching for more about him after his death.
I found a clip of John in an interview captured during a library birthday celebration:
Looking uncomfortable with the attention he was not seeking.
Later, it appears to me that he again tried to connect at least somewhat with the interviewer.
Could I have saved him from this fate?
Yet what I could have done was to stop occasionally and ask how he was doing. Show some interest, some sign that he was worth the small amount of time it would have taken to speak with him.
Offer him some gesture of humanity.
This has nothing to do with politics, or ‘funding’, ‘programs’ or any other excuses which many will use.
This is basic compassion for ones fellow human being.
One who was born with promise, hopes, and dreams.
Who had interests and opinions like any of us.
Yet for whatever reason(s) was isolated and enventually died (IMHO) of neglect.
I am sorry John.
You were of value.
I let you down.
I will do better.
Thank you to whoever posted this. He is still missed to this day by many.
His name was spelled Jon. That was always important to him, that there was no “h” in his name.
I just saw the writing about Jon below. Oh my. It’s been 7 years and I’ve never seen that before. I have no words…
whoever wrote it…. beautiful words.