Meet the Humans of the Keys

Meet the Humans of the Keys

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Bill Beaver - Marathon

“I am homeless. I don’t smoke, drink, or take dope, nothing negative whatsoever. I have a pretty good reputation and everyone here knows me and the cops leave me alone.

In Ft. Lauderdale I was making $32.60/hr. Excellent money. I was operating heavy equipment. I wasn’t happy cause I had to work with drug and dope addicts. It was a bad situation. I asked a cop if I had the chance to go to jail being around all this stuff, even though I didn’t do any of it and he told me there was always that chance, so I quit, came down to my favorite place in the Keys and ended up being homeless. I don’t regret the decision. I went for happiness over money. It was worth it.

You have to go for the positive, never the negative. I had to teach myself that, it doesn’t just come to you. Growing up, everything around me was negative. I went hitch hiking in Canada by myself once, and I met my maker. Imagine that, in the middle of the wilderness in Canada I met my maker!

I hang out at the tree behind the store here and I meet a lot of people. I don’t know why I am meeting them, you wouldn’t believe it. I thought it would be a bunch of drunks and dope addicts but it hasn’t been that way whatsoever. I meet people from all walks of life and from all over the world actually.

My life’s dream is to go to Oregon. I am from Pennsylvania. I want to go see the Oregon State Beavers play, because my last name is Beaver. That makes sense, right? “ He laughed. “ I always wanted to go over there, so I am sitting here in my dream and I am thinking how am I going to get to Oregon from here? I am thinking do I bike, do I hitch hike? Do I get a job then go in my pickup truck? I had it made before. I would work for 10 months and travel for 2.

I don’t have to be in this position. I could go back to Ft. Lauderdale or Miami and work, but I love it down here. It’s your choice how you want to live your life.

The biggest lesson I have learned is everything positive, nothing negative. Usually, whatever happens, there is something you can get out of it. What you do is take the good out of whatever happens and you forget the rest. The only thing that matters is the positive.”


  1. I picked up Bill right outside of Houston about a week and a half ago. We were headed towards Austin (West). He said he wanted a ride West, as far as I could take him. After I dropped him off in Austin (Walmart) he said he was going to try to go towards San Antonio and then towards El Paso. He is a very kind soul, I knew it the moment I saw him. I am glad I got to meet Bill in this life, he brings a new experience to everyone who meets him.

  2. Bill Beaver, a man of many positives and zero negatives. I had the privilege of driving Bill from Alhambra to La Verne California. During our ride, Bill shared with me a few things that I will carry with me for now on; never give into hate, never seek revenge, and be nice. Bill, you were able to teach me so much in such little time, and for that I thank you. Continue to spread the positives, Bill, be safe and God bless.

  3. A modern day prophet.
    Love you Bill !
    Met you on your corner in the Keys and have never forgotten your message of love and optimism and roses.

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  5. Oops accidentally deleted my comment. I am here in West Linn, Oregon, and Bill has graced us with his presence! He's finally going to a Beaver's game!
    Unfortunately, he suffered a heart attack last week and he's slowly recovering... some nice college students drove him down to Corvallis for the game.

  6. I saw Bill yesterday in central Florida while I was driving on an errand. Today, going on another errand I saw him again. After completing my trip I stopped at the store and while walking out I saw him again. Surely that must be fate, so I stopped for just the few moments I had and talked to him. A kind, nice man with a great message. Dont lose your dream and always be nice. I wish you well on your journey Bill. The Keys are close!!