Brenda became homeless in September of 2002 with her dog Rowdy, a Lab/Chow mix. While dealing with legal issues she slept in a storage unit, on the streets, and exchanged labor for a room at a run-down motel in Hutchinson and Randall Counties, in the Texas panhandle.
In February of 2004, her legal issues brought her and the dog, in a little red wagon, to Washington, DC. The day she arrived in the district, she was directed to a service provider that, after many hours of effort, found a way for Rowdy to stay at a shelter with her under the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Brenda tried to seek employment, but living in a shelter and caring for an animal made employment impossible. Eventually she found work selling Street Sense, a homeless community newspaper, and "Rowdy was the real breadwinner. He attracted the customers."
In August of 2005, Rowdy began showing the signs of age, and on the 23rd of November he was euthanized. Brenda takes comfort in the fact that, "he's no longer homeless, and in Heaven with God."
Today, Brenda continues to work for Street Sense, and she is employed part-time as home-helper. The money that she receives goes to paying for the storage unit she was unable to pay for in Texas during her first two years in Washington. Her legal matters remain unresolved.