Gordon Smith doesn’t leave the house without at least a couple of pairs of socks. The memory of seeing what he calls “hideous” feet ”” toes eaten by frostbite, or reddened and peeling from trench foot ”” reminds him that the gift of a warm pair of clean socks can go a long way on the streets of Edmonton.
“It is such a minuscule gift that I can give them,” Smith said during a Friday morning breakfast at the All Saints Cathedral Anglican Church organized for homeless people in the city.
“They need more, they have nothing and when you give them something that they personally have and own and it’s brand new, it’s their own.”
Smith has been giving out socks for a decade in Edmonton and figures he’s amassed 70,000 pairs of socks, enough to fill an average-sized bedroom, and enough to crown him with the title “sock man,” among some who know him.