Tributes to Charles Davis

Charles Davis flashing double peace signs.

2011 Photo by Ken Martin, Volunteer

For my brother, my friend. It’s so mind-blowing how many more people seem to take notice when someone is dead. I guess that’s the way of the world.

I have experienced many years of homelessness and want to meet and know as many positive people like Charles as I can. We went through some serious times together. Shit, we were so close to death so many times that I started calling him “Nine Lives.”

Being homeless is dangerous. Not just the elements. There can be territory issues on the street. My friend Charles was stabbed while he was asleep. His head was opened up so bad a doctor even thought he had been shot.

One customer who came to Charles’s funeral told me his eyes have been opened to a lot of things, thanks to knowing Charles. I could tell this man has never acted like he is better than another.

Though he had to lay in the streets and alleyways and may not have known where his next meal was coming from, brother Charles always put God first. He always told people about Jesus, even when we didn’t know how we were going to survive through the cold night. So, I know God’s got him now: Charles is warm, and his stomach is full. I miss you, my friend.

Andre BrinsonArtist/Vendor


All my friends are dying on the streets of Washington, D.C.

Christopher Gross, Derick Jackson, Freddy Showtime, Fingers Jr. and now Charles.

These guys I met out in the street. These guys that I used to hang out with out here was real to me.

Joe Jackson, Artist/Vendor


I live near Tenleytown.  I bought Street Sense from Charles.  He had a beautiful smile.  He taught me how to shake hands.  I loved reading his columns in Street Sense.  I think he was a saintly man.  I know he’s up in heaven now enjoying his reunion with his family and with Our Lord, and keeping an eye on the rest of us down here.

May God bless him and through and with Charles’s intercession may God bless us, too!

—Barbara Busch, Reader/Customer


I wanted to take the time to give our brother Charles Davis a proper nod & blessing on his way. You see, Charles was the older influence who suggested and motivated quite a few of us in the Tenleytown area to sign up for the Street Sense Media paper. I’d say great suggestion — especially seeing how I came away with a movie! Charles never wanted to be included in our movie dealings but he was kind enough to model a few pics & poses for me.

We were able to feature his longtime street comrade, Chris Gross (who died a couple of years earlier and was honored in the annual vigil for fallen homeless people) in some of my youtube videos, although Chris did not participate with Street Sense.

They both spent many years left out in the cold of the concrete jungle. Over 27 years each! So I salute and say “rest in peace” to a couple of street soldiers who have paved and showed the way in a society that has oft-failed to make a way for those living lowly. Discarded by one side of life and society yet highly regarded by another side of life. They show us that yes, out of the concrete can grow life! 

Levester Green II, Artist/Vendor

Charles Davis flashes a peace sign while wearing an Obama hat.
2017 Photo by Levester Green, Artist/Vendor
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We believe ending homelessness begins with listening to the stories of those who have experienced it.