Posted in Creative Writing, JF&CS, Published Work

Harry’s Story

Written for JF&CS of Atlanta


He looked to be at the top of the world. When he tells his story, everything he has done and accomplished, Harry tells the story of a man of success. As a Hollywood marketer, Harry could name drop many celebrities from his time at the heart of L.A. He told the stories of the movies, describing the best way to show the world what he did, what they should see, why they would like it best. He left his home in the Morningside area of Atlanta, Georgia over 60 years ago and did not look back until 2018.  He attended Yale University then after some time in New York, he set out to L.A. to make it in Hollywood advertising blockbusters including Sophie’s Choice and Forrest Gump.


Things change. The Hollywood marketer and publicist felt the tailspin. For Harry, financial stress marked by not getting paid for his work set in. For the man who “always landed on his feet,” he worried how he was going to land this time now at age 80. The deterioration of his life that he knew led to what he called the “darkest days.”


Harry felt alone. His depression was sincere, and while he never was successful, his mental state led to attempts on his life while he saw no way out. Jewish Family and Career Services did.


Harry is a charismatic, hopeful man who never meets a stranger. Even before his move to Atlanta, his belief in the work of social services like JF&CS was tangible because of how much the JFCS LA helped him. He has even said of JFCS LA’s work that, “JFCS saved [his] life.”


From there, Harry finally came home to Atlanta. He sought therapy at JF&CS Atlanta and met Keryn. Harry felt truly comfortable, heard, and understood with Keryn and the staff at JF&CS.  Now cheerful and talkative, Harry claims that with Keryn’s help, he is the happiest that he has been in years. In addition to working with counseling, Harry worked with case management who helped him find housing of his own. Harry says what stands out about JF&CS is “They really listen.  They’re a community and they have the knowledge so they work together to help.” He has a positive energy that others have commented on while he is out and about to which he responded “JFCS!”


JF&CS cannot be prouder of everything that Harry has accomplished in the short amount of time he has been working with counseling and case management. With the leagues forward that he’s climbed and a big, hopeful smile, Harry has become an inspiration and a grand example that it is never too late to create the life you want.


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