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The Return of Bobby Hise

Down-and-out Eagle Rock native is back on the same traffic island from where the LAPD removed him on January 11.

A homeless and handicapped Eagle Rock native who was cleared out by the LAPD from a tree-shaded traffic island last month is back on the same spot—and is willing to stop living on the streets if he has enough money to pay a deposit and the first month’s rent on a one-room apartment.

Bobby Hise has resumed camping on a rectangular piece of land on the northeast corner of Eagle Rock Boulevard and York Boulevard less than six weeks after Senior Lead Officer Craig Orange asked him to leave, evidently because his presence there was causing unsanitary conditions.

Why This Intersection?

Eagle Rock Patch caught up with Hise on Wednesday morning. He said he had moved about a block and a half away on Eagle Rock Boulevard and that his first night back on the traffic divider facing the store was on Monday. He likes the spot on the intersection of two major boulevards and Alumni Avenue because it’s centrally located and he can “get around everywhere,” Hise said.

Hise was seated on a makeshift mattress on the ground, reading a copy of the Los Angeles Times. His belongings were scattered all around him, most of them piled into two shopping carts. A third shopping cart stood empty nearby, parked next to Hise’s wheelchair.

Asked what he’d do if the LAPD asked him to vacate the area again, Hise replied: “I’ll just come back and keep coming back.” He added: “They don’t have the resources to f**k with me.”

How He Gets By

An alumnus of , Hise said he makes enough money to survive by picking trash and helping college students from as far as Caltech polish up the prose on their term papers. Speaking impeccable English, he said that students these days have “great technical skills but not the language skills.”

He also gives personal fitness training lessons, said Hise, adding that both his father and he were Olympic weightlifters. In addition, said Hise, he gets “minimum social security.”

But his income is never enough to allow him to live off the streets, Hise said. “The moment you save enough money some expense or the other comes up,” he said, explaining that among other things, he has medical bills to pay. He can only move around in a wheelchair or on crutches—the result, Hise said, of a car crash that he had on Colorado Boulevard, near , in 1988.

Hise said he inherited a house from his father on Avenue 43. But the Department of Social Security forced him to sell it as a precondition for his Social Security benefits because the house had 210 feet of stairs. “They said I couldn’t climb the stairs, although I was able to scoot up backwards on my buttocks,” he said.

His father was a Native American orphan who was adopted, said Hise. Unlike his father, who was a veteran, Hise said he didn’t serve in the military. “Somebody put in the papers that I’m a veteran, [but] I was never in the military,” Hise said, adding that he wasn’t drafted because he was the only son of a World War II veteran and that he was convicted of possessing marijuana as a youth.

Pondering a Life Off the Streets

On September 1 this year, said Hise, he will turn 66 years old. He has two sons—one in North Carolina and another in Southern California’s Conejo Valley. Asked if his sons help him financially, Hise replied: “I don’t need their help.”

But if he could afford it, he’d be willing to rent a room somewhere, including in the home of his son in Conejo Valley, Hise said.

Asked how much money it would require to make that possible, Hise said about $1,000 would enable him to pay a deposit and the first month’s rent. He could meet the rest of his expenses with his Social Security money, he said.

AliJill February 23, 2012 at 03:31 PM
Poor guy!
mike nickels February 23, 2012 at 06:22 PM
sympathy for the predicament he is in, but having spoken to this individual at length in the past, i can state that he is a remarkable asshole. from being camped on eagle rock in front of the veterinary or camped next to the 7-11 on el paso, this individual is confrontational, an aggressive panhandler, and has been seen wasted out in front of the 7-11 inebriated and then passed out in his wheel chair more than once. undoubtedly paranoid and complicated by other maladies both physical and mental. the system had failed him like many others. he should be moved to a facility to take care of him. the median is not an option. and its more than just a sanitation issue, though the office is correct in citing that issue as well.
STARCHY February 23, 2012 at 07:19 PM
whats the big deal? Eagle Rock is infested with bums and the epicenter of them all is the ALMA LODGE. and what has Joey Weezer done about it??? nada
Tim Ryder February 23, 2012 at 07:36 PM
Before anyone starts scrounging around for their loose change, I can think of two places where we could get money to help our fellow Eagle Rocker out. The Eagle Rock Neighborhood Council hands out $40,000 dollars a year for questionable 'community improvement' projects. I say 'questionable' because last year they were going to give away $10,000 dollars to one of their own council members named Jessica Wethington for 6 bus benches and the money was going to go to Kalamazoo, Michigan! I was at the meeting and questioned how giving away $10,000 dollars of our taxdollars to a city in another state was going to help us in Eagle Rock. They wisely decided to bury that one before anyone else started to notice. The 2nd money pit I would explore is our own rich Councilman Jose Huizar who is handed $100,000 a year to curry votes from local community groups and do 'opposition research' on his political enemies (see Huizar's Community Power report). Mr. Huizar also gets $179,000 a year in compensation for his smile and good looks and I guess he could be considered the richest man in Eagle Rock considering the average pay of $39,000 for us little people is a tad more than the meager stipend that our colorful Mr. Hise gets from the government.
long division February 24, 2012 at 04:23 AM
What about that guy who lives in the Eagle Rock Lumber parking lot (behind Burger King), in an RV? He used to live in a car but now lives an RV and drives a white/red honda scooter. Does anyone know what the deal is with that? Does he have some kind of deal with the owners? Anyway, he doesn't seem to bother anyone. I wonder if he could give the traffic island man some advice about keeping out of trouble while still living a robust street life.
john q citizen February 24, 2012 at 04:37 AM
@long: His name is Roy. He's harmless.
Ajay Singh (Editor) February 24, 2012 at 05:11 AM
Thanks, *long division*: I have heard that Roy—*john q citizen* seems to know his name—does have a deal with Eagle Rock Lumber to stay in their parking lot.
long division February 24, 2012 at 03:45 PM
Yeah, Roy seems like a pretty laid-back dude. And I wonder what his story is. Like, how did he move up from that little sedan to a huge RV?
Mr. jepg June 14, 2012 at 06:57 PM
yes do a story on Roy. He is a good guy. Totally worth hearing from and/or having the community help out. He is not full of bile and bs like bobby.
Pat Pickett February 10, 2013 at 01:47 PM
this man is no bum....i have met him...he is good and kind.

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