All week as I have labored on the roof of Ruth's house, I looked out over the empty lot next door and saw nothing but a clean slate where rows and rows of shotgun houses once stood, where when I came to Shreveport less than six years ago you could find any vice you wanted. And the only remnants of the block's past life, remained dangling from the power lines.
Regardless of their origin (prostitution, drugs or a remembrance for a fallen gang member) the shoes meant nothing to me but leftover memories of a place long past and all week I had wished that someone would cut them down.
Finally the house captain at House #8, Keith, loaded up on a high lift and cut each of the sneakers down. As I watched from the rooftop I thought about the symbolism of that act. How it was so simple and yet meant so much. In fact, much of what has been done this week is the same way. Simple gestures that as a whole will have a lasting impact.