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Homeless advocates call memorial move 'disrespectful'

Bench moved back following advocates' response
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Posted at 11:41 AM, Apr 04, 2019
and last updated 2019-04-17 11:39:02-04

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — The Homeless Memorial Bench was moved back after advocates were upset that it was moved to make way for an NFL Draft stage.

The bench in downtown Nashville was dedicated in 2014 in honor of Tara Cole, who was pushed into the Cumberland River as she was sleeping back in 2006. She was 32-years-old.

The bench was moved about 30 feet from its location in preparation for the upcoming NFL Draft.

Howard Allen, co-founder of the Nashville Homeless Underground, says he’s upset that he wasn’t notified of the temporary removal.

“This is holy ground to us,” he said.

Allen added that he’s hurt and feels the move is “disrespectful.”

“I love football like everyone else but they talked about the cherry trees but they didn’t say anything about the Homeless Memorial Bench being removed,” he said.

Allen said in return, he’d like to see at least a $1 million donation be made to the Barnes Housing Trust Fund.

“We had 127 people to die on the street last year. We need housing,” he added.

The bench was moved back to its memorial location Thursday evening.