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Man on journey to D.C. via wheelchair passes through North Fork

09/06/2017 6:00 AM |

Richard Harrell is making his way from Boston to Washington D.C. by an untraditional means: a wheelchair.

Mr. Harrell, 68, is traveling to the nation’s capital to express concerns for Section 8 housing for the elderly and disabled. He was recently evicted from his Section 8 housing in Massachusetts, he said.

“It’s absolutely repulsive to throw a 68-year-old disabled guy out onto the street,” he said. “If I’m going to die out here I might as well annoy some people in the process.”

On the back of his wheelchair is a sign that begins with: “Boston to D.C.”

He started his journey in Boston last week and arrived in Orient by ferry Monday at 6 p.m., and was in Southold by about noon Tuesday. He plans to voice his concerns about unsafe conditions in Section 8 housing, while also moving south to combat the cold Massachusetts winter ahead of him if he is to stay homeless, he said.

“I’m alone in the world, I don’t have any family,” he said during an interview along Main Road in Southold. “I might as well go make some people in Washington angry in the process.”

The Section 8 program dates back to 1978 and is formally known as the Housing Choice Voucher program.

rsiford@timesreview.com

Photo caption: Richard Harrell in his wheelchair along Main Road in Southold. (Credit: Rachel Siford)

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