Community members in San Francisco’s North Beach neighborhood are pitching in to help the family of a homeless man who was critically injured by a hit-and-run driver last weekend.
As previously reported, 62-year-old Selester “Les” Rowe was struck last Saturday at 11:18 PM as he crossed Columbus Ave. at the busy intersection near Stockton and Green Streets
The suspect vehicle, which has not been found, is described as a late-90’s model Chevrolet SUV, possibly a Suburban, with tinted windows and a California license plate ending in “24.” The vehicle may have front-end damage from the collision.
Les has called one of North Beach’s main intersections home for over 5 years and is a beloved member of the community, always encouraging each person who passes to “have a nice day.”
Paulina Krol, who works at Dell’Uva, a nearby wine bar, said Rowe was not like many of the other people who spend their days out on the streets in the neighborhood.
“He was different,” Krol said. “He never asked you for anything.'”
Les sustained brain and spine injuries when he was hit May 12th. Though he does have family visiting to check on his condition, his mother, sisters, and cousins are having financial difficulties during this tough time.
Krol said the family has no long-term place to stay while they care for Rowe, whose extensive injuries include a fractured spine, brain swelling and multiple broken bones.
“We’re trying to get a discounted room for the two (sisters) to come back so they can take care of him,” Krol said.
In addition, Krol and the North Beach Citizens group have set up a fund at Citibank’s North Beach branch to aid Les and his family.
She said, “I really took to him, and when I heard what happened, I went around the neighborhood and the entire neighborhood came together.”
For more information and to donate, call Citibank at (415) 362-8410.
Police are asking for the public’s help in finding the hit-and-run vehicle, so if you have any information on the collision, SFPD asks that you call Det. Cadigan at (415) 553-9259 or call the SFPD anonymous tip line at (415) 575-4444. You can also anonymously text-a-tip to TIP411 with “SFPD” as the subject.
Photo of Rowe: courtesy Paulina Krol