Homeless man finds friend frozen to death on New Year's Day

Posted at 11:14 PM, Jan 04, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-05 00:15:38-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Another frigid night and Kansas City's homeless sought warmth, be it through the heat of a fire, a hot meal or a warm beverage.

The bitter cold brings consequences that are at times — deadly.

James McGlothin is now dealing with the aftermath. On Thursday, he held back tears as he remembered his friend of more than 20 years, Reggie Glenn, who died of exposure on New Year's Day.

McGlothin told 41 Action News the two of them had sought refuge from the elements in a shed behind a home in the West Plaza.

They had insulation and piles of blankets but it simply wasn't enough to keep his friend safe.

McGlothin made the grim discovery that evening.

"He had one eye opened and one eye closed, I thought he was looking at me so I kicked his foot and he didn't respond. I looked at him and I picked him up and he was frozen, I sat him back down," McGlothin said.

As McGlothin mourns he carries on with the help of people like Tammy Eldridge, the owner of a Westport flower shop.

"He comes in everyday, walks by, waves says 'hey'," Eldridge said.

For the last two years she's made sure that when the temperatures get extreme, McGlothin has somewhere to turn to.

"They're all somebody's child and I think about that every time I see one of them walk by that they are somebody's child out here that's cold, that's hungry," Eldridge said.