Hitchhiker of Jim Kerwin


Jim Kerwin was a "Michigan outdoors" reporter for Detroit News Papers until he retired in 1994. Before that, he wrote for the "Stars and Stripes", so his choice of drop-off point for his hitchhiker makes sense.

Kerwin was disappointed when the Hitchhiker didn't show up at the Detroit News Building, the destination he had selected for it and posted on the back of the plywood cut -out.

In May, 2000, I received an email from C.M. Faubert who wrote;

"In the early 1990's I spent 2 weeks in Frankfort, Michigan,  hiking in the hills and fishing the streams - I was on holiday from Australia and was sort of casually touring the US. In a Deli off of the  Main street (not far from the only movie theatre) I saw your Jim  Kerwin. He appeared to be simply standing around at the Deli, people  watching. He didn't say much - actually he never spoke to me - but he  always had a grin on his face, so I can only assume he was of a  particularly happy nature. He was the source of much conversation among  the establishments nearby - no one knew from whence he came, and there  was great speculation as to the reason for his constant good mood.
 I offered the opinion that he was simply aware of a "joke" that we could  not see. Others had different ideas as to the source of his amusement.   In any event, that is where I saw your wayward friend.
  ....As for what I recall about the deli itself: It was located in a building  with other commercial shops which faces the street with a sidewalk   fronting it. It was famous for large sandwiches, and had a very small  eat-in area as I believe it was popular for bring-in and catering. In any  event, it certainly was a reasonably fashionable establishment, and I  would be very surprised if it was not there any longer.  As I recall, across the street was an open park, and you could see the  lake from there.

  NB: I never did make it back to Australia. I met an American girl on
  the train station platform in Denver and she insisted that I marry her
  and start a family - which I did"

Note: Jim Kerwin died in January, 2004.  He was 74.  Nolan Finlay wrote a piece in the Detroit News.  I said a few words at his funeral.

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