Homeless documentary earns honors for Mahtomedi student

C-SPAN today aired a video documentary from a Mahtomedi student, whose entry, called “Homeless,” took third prize in the networks StudentCam 2011 video documentary competition.

Sam Ostlund is a senior at Mahtomedi High School.

  • Jim Shapiro

    Kudos to Sam, and to you Bob, for your continuous practice of publicizing the actions of people who think and act beyond themselves.

  • Suzanne

    Read about this in the Pi-Press – Great story! Thanks for putting up the video.

  • Sam Ostlund

    I just stumbled upon this today! Thanks bob for the recognition, and thanks to everyone who watched my documentary!

  • Tom

    Nice video-only one problem. The star of the show, Brad, is not homeless. His name is Brad Hengtgen and he lives at 2094 Ronald Avenue in White Bear Lake.

    Brad has lived across the street from me for 25 years. It wouldn’t surprise me that he lied to you about being homeless-that’s the kind of person he is.

    Next time, verify your sources.

  • Kimarie Schroeder

    I’m not really sure who Brad’s “Neightbor” is that stated that he was not homelsss…but you’re not a very good neighbor if you didn’t know once he was divorced that he did become homeless.

    I met Brad 36 years ago. He is a wonderful person and would always make you laugh or smile. I guess I haven’t lived across the street from him for 25 years, but I can tell you I know more about him then his “Neighbor” does.

    Brad did leave his home and he did live on the streets. After the documentary was done, his ex-wife agreed to allow him to live in the basement. They had been married for 27 years and get along better than they ever had since this documentary.

    It’s sad to think that people are writing in their opinions telling others to check their sources…without checking their backyard to really see what their “Neighbors” are really up too.

    I passed Brad on the ramp one day. I can honestly say I locked my door. I didn’t know it was Brad. I’ve never seen him with such sadness in his eyes.

    When I found out it was Brad on the corner, I cried. He told me he was known as a “Flagger” which is what they call their signs. Flags. I was in shock.

    For those of you who are afraid to hand someone some spare change, as hard as it is to even think that change is spare these days, you are helping people.

    Remember “What goes around comes around”

    Kimarie Schroeder

    Meadowlands, MN

  • Anonymous

    Actually, he is NOT homeless. He lives at the address mentioned, but still begs for change every day at the on ramp for 694 of WB Ave. He has lived there the entire time. The majority of the men “flagging” at this location are NOT homeless. There was an expose about one of them a few years back, showing him going back to his, fairly nice, middle class home after begging all day long. The student who wrote this , I believe confronted him about it after it came out he was a fraud. Surprisingly, these people make quite a bit of money standing on the ramp on Sundays, or any other day there is a lot of traffic. Theyre frauds, including Brad, and they are pathetic