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Skiatook community honoring homeless man and his dog killed in an accident

Posted at 8:09 PM, Jan 04, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-05 08:12:46-05

SKIATOOK, Okla. — Friends and community members are gathered to have a candlelight vigil for a homeless man and his dog.

The two were killed in an accident Friday night.

Two News Oklahoma spoke to many community members who were friends of Josh and his dog Valentine.

They say he was a humble man and he impacted them in a way they never thought possible.

“I think that Josh was an angel sent here. I think that he came here for a reason,” Kimmie Robinson, a friend of Josh, said.

Josh and his dog Valentine hitchhiked their way from Colorado but were left in Skiatook sometime in September.

Even though Skiatook wasn’t their intended destination they stayed.

“I said 'Josh, I am so sorry that happened to you' and he said 'No I feel it was a blessing because I’m living a miracle now',” Stella Brand, a friend of Josh, said.

Josh and Valentine were struck by a car on New Year's Eve after spending a few months in the community.

Friends of Josh’s tell us he loved people and being in the community but he loved his dog most.

“Couldn’t have one without the other,” Trina Hiatt said.

So much so Trina says everything in his backpack was for Valentine.

“All that was in there was dog food, a pair of jeans, and treats for the dog. So it wasn’t about Josh. He was about his dog, his animal, his forever companion," Hiatt said.

They tell us Josh did odd jobs around town to support him and Valentine.

That is how he got to know most people in the community.

Kimmie even says this week Josh was scheduled to start a new job.

"It’s heartbreaking because he was putting one foot in the other and he wasn’t just taking a hand out,” Robinson said.

Although not everyone liked josh and as Robinson says some thought he was just a bum.

But those that saw Josh wasn’t like other homeless told me almost this exact same thing.

“I don’t even know if Josh was here to make him a better person because he made me one and I really feel that in my heart he made me a better person,” said Hiatt.

These ladies tell me with the support of the community all cremation expenses have been covered.

What money is left from a GoFundMe account will be used to pay it forward helping other struggling just like Josh would have wanted.

They hope people who see this story will get the courage to help others and "be the change" as well.

This is an ongoing police investigation so Skiatook officers aren't releasing any details about the nature of the accident.

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