Toomsuba Resident Living in Tool Shed

A Toomsuba man has been living in what many call deplorable conditions, since a fire forced him from his home.

Neighbors told Newscenter 11 they are concerned about Alex Guillen, who now lives in his tool shed.

For the last five years, the 71-year-old Guillen has lived in the same area in Toomsuba. But three months ago, his house was destroyed by an accidental fire.

At the time, he said his wife was visiting their daughter in Georgia and she has stayed there.
He said his daughter visits him periodically to bring him things he needs, but the shed has no plumbing and is not even completely enclosed.

"I decided to stay and take care of the place, because the people around here are stealing," said Guillen. "It's cold here at night, for some reason; it's cold!'

When asked if he wanted to move to another place, Guillen said, "No, I want to stay here. I'm already used to it. What would I do with my dogs? I can't leave them."

Guillen has five dogs that he cares for at this time. At night he sleeps in a tent inside the tool shed. He takes baths at a nephew's house not far away.

About 3 to 4 times a day, a neighbor, who stopped by while we were there, says she brings water and food to Guillen and washes his clothes.

For now, Guillen says all he needs is a coat to keep warm and some materials to do carpentry work.

Prior to us contacting the Mississippi Department of Human Services and officials with MCCSA, we understand that neither agency was aware of his situation. However, officials from both agencies say they are now looking into it.

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