The New Hobo Grapevine!

The Hobo Grapevine
Hobo Spike is going through a tough time with his kidneys.
 Let him know we are thinking of him
Cards and letters can be sent to:
Hobo Spike
707 Riverview Drive
Gadsden, AL 35903
We are looking for contact information on Hobo King NY Slim! 
Email Flatcar Frank

Congratulations to Redbird Express,
 for receiving the Key to the 
City of Britt.
(photo courtesy of the Britt Tribune)

Jet Set John gave me the sad news today that Guitar Whitey caught the westbound 
July 3, 2018.  He was 97 and walking in a park near his home in California.  
Still very sharp till the end.
CT Shorty
Amory went off well. 12 hobos were in attendance, Kabar, Medicine Man, Daisy Sue, Ms Charlotte,
Virginia Slim, Gypsy Moon, Collinwood Kid, Capt. Slim, Ziggy, Penny Pincher Old Man Moses. 
Thursday and Friday were great, unfortunately Saturday was rained out. Most of the hobos 
left Saturday night. Thanks to Medicine Man for the update


Well I just talked to a very not friendly nurse who could barely speak English and she 

said they haven't gotten any results back yet but the Dr was just with him and said that

 he can go home tomorrow!!! She said I should call Karl and talk to him! So I did and low 

and behold he answered the phone on the second ring!! He carried on a pretty normal 

conversation for about 20 minutes!!! I have no idea what is going on with him:) I guess 

he is right when he says that his body just heals itself! I couldn't believe he was talking 

and sounding normal again. BUT he is still coughing pretty hard. He said it is just an 

irritation. I'll do my best to keep track of him when he gets back to his camper. Hope

 he keeps his phone charged up! I am going to call the nurses in the morning and see 

what I can find out from them. Maybe I will get that one that is so nice and knows what's

 going on. I really think English speaking nurses would be a good idea for everyone

 involved. So we will just have to put him in God's hands and keep an eye on him:) 

THANKS for all the prayers they sure seem to be working!! ��

I'll get back when I know more...

Come on Pat

Don't forget people! Send me your upcoming events!

Amory Railroad Festival, April 12 - 15th Downtown Amory by Main St
 and Frisco Park. There will be a hobo jungle on the South edge of
Frisco Park behind the historic locomotive.There will be loud,
live music next to the jungle.  The will be numerous food vendors
 with "state fair" style snack food as well as BBQ, hot dogs
and hamburgers. and local diners. New public rest rooms
East of city hall and fire department,  plus porta-potties throughout
 the area  There will be an estimated 60,000 people visiting.

Thanks to Kabar for the info 2/15/18

Hi! I just talked with Karl's Dr. She said he is moving today to Quakertown Center
in Quakertown PA. The address is 1020 S Main St, Quakertown  PA 18951.
I think his son will be bringing him there, the Dr called here to get his number.
Please feel free to send cards to cheer him up:)  She said the speech therapy should
 help him regain some that he lost. Keep the prayers going:) THANKS!

Come On Pat
Hi! Karl Jr and his son made it out there today about 1 or so. The test yesterday
showed no other blockages in his heart or lungs! Praise God for that news!!!
His son talked to the Dr and it sounds like they have Redbird convinced that he
needs to go to a rehab for a short time. He needs speech therapy there and then
after he goes home he can do it as an outpatient. They hope to find a rehab that
will be able to take him close to Quakertown if possible. I will keep you updated
on that. Thanks for all the prayers!!! God heard:)

Come on Pat

Hi! Frank, Redbirds son called me today and told me that Redbird had a stroke

and was in the Quakertown hosp. I called there and found out he has full function

of his limbs but his speech is garbled, can't always think of the right word and gets

things mixed up. But he has gotten better since Fri. He drove himself in from the

QMart on Fri!! They are transferring him tonight to Bethlehem Pa hosp to do a

heart cath to see if there are any blockages in his heart. He thinks he is going

home on Wed. I just thought maybe you could put something on the grapevine to

ask for prayers and cards to his PO box for him as he had a slight stroke.

I think that is all I would put for now, just to let him know that people care about


I will keep you updated with what is going on with him.

Hope all is well with you!!

Come on Pat 

I would like to thank Birdman for the Christmas present.
I am picking my teeth like a pro.


Dear hobo friends, I would like to inform you that my Dad, MN Jim Morphew will be starting chemo

treatments today. His bladder cancer has returned & is in the lymph nodes now. He will have these treatments

for 4 months & then they will be able to tell if the chemo is working or not. If the treatments don’t work,

they give him 1-1 1/2 years. If the treatments do work, it could extend his life another year or so. This is not a

cure for his cancer, but a way to slow it down. Please pray for our family, & please share this post.

Thank you, Donna Schmidt

N.Y. Ron passed on Halloween October 31st.  Someone found him in his apartment. 
No other details at this time.
Condolences can be sent to The Smith Family, 393 Middle Rd., Achusmet, MA 02743.
The Grapevine only works when you add to it.  
You can email us with your upcoming events, letters and
 notices to
Sorry about the delay in getting up and running.  Please send me all the juicy gossip in the hobo world for the


Britt 2017

Thoughts from a Queen


Bookworm Bonnie, Queen 2013-14



“Cannonball” Paul! and I have returned from a fabulous Hobo Week – 

we are so happy to be back after missing last year with “Cannonball’s” broken leg.

 It was an amazing week – perfect weather! The early arrival picture went well.

 The meeting on Monday was great and the Head Pipe did an amazing job keeping

 everything in control – no small job! The Hobo Cemetery looked fantastic – good 

job Indiana and helpers! Shorty’s presentation at the cemetery was outstanding! 

Adman’s ceremony was especially meaningful. Friday morning’s ceremony for those

 who caught the westbound was heartfelt – I’m glad my husband, “Cannnonball” and 

Riff could add some gospel music. Angie “Dirty Feet’s” marker is beautiful


The Queen’s Gala was a wonderful event – the gardens looked beautiful!


We loved the work that was done to the museum. I had a fabulous nickel garage sale tour

 with Half-Track, finding many great values – the best of which is a pair of pottery 

Bookworm bookends! Of course I HAD to have that!


 Loved the music at the jungle. Thanks to Flatcar Frank, the sound system worked well. 

It was so nice to get to renew friendships and make new friends.

The new permanent Art Gallery displaying the year’s  Queen and King’s portrait’s is so nice

 – glad that Iowa Shorty finally has a permanent home for her art!


The culmination of the crowning of our new King and Queen was amazing.

 Pretty stiff competition this year but, so happy for Tuck and Jewel!


Just a super fun week! Thanks to all who made it such a success!


Love ,

Your  Former Queen (2013-14)

Bookworm Bonnie

Dear hobo family,
I had the honor of singing at the celebration of Adman's life on Friday. 
It was awesome. Joining me there were MN Jewel, Tuck, C'mon Pat, 
Ms. Cindy Lou, MN Jim, Half Track, El Paso Kid & Rod. 
If you want to read a nice article about Adman, Google star 
Tribune Todd waters.  It was in today's paper.  
I am honored to have been Adman's queen as I continue to be yours. 
I love you and hope to see many of you at the convention.

All my best to you, 

Adman's Celebration of Life
A big thank you to Meredith Westin Photography for the use
of the photos.  To see the rest,hurry over to

Todd V. Waters  1947 - 2017

Todd Waterrs (AKA ‘Adman’) caught a westbound train to freedom on July 7, 2017. Todd was embraced by his rail riding, dumpster diving hobo family as their King in 2004, and by his Fortune 500 clients for brilliant and audacious marketing campaigns that earned him fame, wealth and nine “Best in World” honors. He was kind, soft spoken, courageous and wickedly funny – an adventurer fiercely loyal to his family, his legion of wildly diverse friends, and to all humankind. His motto was "Everyone Matters".

Throughout his life as a rambling hobo, a skydiver who feared heights, an anti-war leader in college,
 a political operative who helped elect two congressmen, and a world class advertising executive,
 Todd was always on a quest for freedom. His soul was driven to create, move, explore and surprise 
with the unexpected, and he did nothing timidly. “Anything worth doing,” he would say, “is worth 
overdoing.” Some people eat an ice cream cone. Todd ate the whole gallon. “Eat dessert first,
” he advised, “and you’ll always have room for it.” 

Todd’s childhood friend, Bill Martin, once asked him why he would leave the comfort and security 
of his family and his Lake Minnetonka home every summer for 40 years to live the hobo life, with 
no money and no phone, exposing himself to danger, dodging the law and sleeping out in the
 elements. He replied, “It’s the freedom I feel.” The more risks he took, and the less he had in his
 pack, the more he was free to experience. 

While Todd rubbed shoulders with the wealthy, prominent and powerful, the people he probably
 respected most for their guts and straightforwardness were hobos. So before hiring account
 executives for his agencies – Waters Advertising, Waters & Company and WatersMolitor, Inc. –
 he sometimes asked candidates to hit the streets and panhandle. He insisted that the people he 
worked with be brave, and know how to close a sale.

Make no mistake – the hobos never viewed Todd as some fly by night, cake eating, Lake Minnetonka 
phony. To them, he was a true brother, leader and Railroad Security dodger whose advocacy helped
 sustain the annual Hobo Convention in Britt, Iowa, along with Britt’s famed Hobo Museum and the 
Hobo Cemetery. Hobos never retire, but Todd took his last train ride to Britt in 2012 – and got arrested. 

On his home writing table, Todd carved a saying: “Look,” said God, “I wanted you the way you are and
 no different. You were a wanderer in my name and wherever you went you brought the settled folk a 
little homesickness for freedom.” 

Todd Waters (AKA Adman) was born in Keokuk, Iowa on October 8, 1947 and caught The Westbound on
 July 7, 2017. He graduated from Wayzata High School and St. Cloud State University. 

Early in 1976, a freight train hit Todd squarely in the heart when he met young Dori Molitor. He was smitten,
 knocked off his feet and totally bewildered by a love that lasted through five years of dating, 16 successful 
years as business partners and 37 ridiculously happy years of marriage. Along the way came their daughter, 
Alexandra, and son, Andrew, who have made them both incredibly proud. 

Todd is also survived by his sisters, Jeanne (Waters) Elizer and Lynn (Waters) Bolyard and five nieces and 
nephews. He is joined in death by his father, Vern Waters, and his mother, Winona (Mitchell) Waters.

A celebration of Todd’s remarkable life will be held on Friday, July 14, 2017 at his Lake Minnetonka home
at 3061 Casco Point Road, Wayzata Minnesota 55391. The viewing will be at 10:00 a.m. followed by an
 outdoor service at 11:00 a.m. and get together by the lake from noon until 3:00 p.m. Come early for the
 best street parking. Those wishing to send memorials should make checks out to “Britt Hobo Days” and
 send to Dori. She will forward them as a mark of Todd’s continuing support for his brother hobos.

Angelina Marie Bergstrom, known as "Angie Dirty Feet" of Northeast Minneapolis,
passed away unexpectedly on Thursday, June 15, 2017. She was 16 years old.

Angelina was a beautiful young woman who loved her pets and spending time
at Logan Park. She was a junior counselor at Camp Bovey where she loved spending
time with kids. She will be greatly missed.

Angelina is survived by her mother, Sarah Porrazzo; father, Scott Bergstrom; brother
, Zachary; sister, Brittany; grandmothers, Julianna (Tuck) Porrazzo-Ray and Sandy Relyea;
great-grandmother, Shirley (Earl) Porrazzo; favorite cat, "Six"; other loving family and friends.

Memorial Gathering at 12:00 noon on Thursday, June 22nd at Billman~Hunt Funeral Chapel
with visitation beginning at 11:00 a.m.

2701 Central Avenue NE
Minneapolis, MN 55418


The Hobo Foundation has donated the Hobo Museum to the 
Britt Hobo Days Committee!  
Current financing does not allow the Foundation to continue 
operating the museum. The Britt Hobo Days Commitee is also a 
501c3 organization and has the manpower to operate and maintain
 the museum for the future.  
The Hobo Foundation will continue to maintain the Hobo Memorial.

"Flatcar" Frank Kelley
President - Hobo Foundation
 just want to let you know that I think about you every day and smile. I've had some wonderful 
conversations with people about our hobo family. I haven't traveled much since the fall, but there 
are so many people in everyday life that are surprised and intrigued my the history of the American hobo. 
I've been asked to present a program at the nursing home where my mom lived. It's tomorrow and
 I expect it to be a lot of fun. 
I hope that you are safe and well. Please drop me a line to let me know how things are going.

In your service, 



Dear hobo family and friends,
Your king and I send our warmest greetings for a wonderful Thanksgiving. Many of us 
are grieving the losses of our lives this past year. Some of us are alone for many reasons.
 There is a lot of uncertainty in our world. But know this: each of you is loved
 and cared for in our community. We celebrate our uniqueness and we respect 
each other's wandering through this life. Be well, safe and thankful.
 In your service, Sunrise and Ricardo