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A ‘brother’ to be remembered

George Doughty's body was found in the woods in Dale City on Jan. 5, 2011.

Woodbridge, Va. –– George Doughty was a good friend, a sort of keeper of homeless community in Dale City, and was like a brother to the man who will lead his remembrance service Thursday.

Doughty was found dead of apparent medical problems in the woods off Dale Boulevard one week ago. He was homeless, and for at least the past three years had called those woods home.

A service will be held in his honor at 8 p.m. at St. Paul United Methodist Church in Woodbridge.

The church itself is the tallest building in that section of town, a fitting place to remember someone who was loved by so many.

“He’s one of our brothers. If you had a family member die wouldn’t you want to do something for them,” asked St. Paul Associate Pastor Kurt Ludwig.

Doughty was a welcome fixture at many of the Thursday night dinners the church holds for the area’s homeless.

There Doughty got a hot meal and could worship if he chose to do so, said Ludwig.

“He was a peaceful guy, always accepting of others, and he always made me feel welcome,” said Ludwig.

At least two homeless camps are located near where Doughty’s body was found.

Last year, a fight broke out and someone used a machete and injured another man.

Afterward, says Hilda Barg Homeless Prevention Center Director Gayle Sanders, it was Doughty who helped to keep peace in the woods.

He spent time at the homeless shelter in Woodbridge, and Sanders said he was one of a kind.

The service is open to anyone who would like to attend.

Kurt hopes residents will not only remember Doughty, but will make a donation to a winter shelter on Telegraph Road, or homeless prevention center in Woodbridge, to remember those in the area who live outdoors.

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