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South Bend warming shelters filled to capacity

SOUTH BEND, Ind.-- WIth the temperatures down to single digits on Thursday night, staying warm was essential to survival. But for some of South Bend's homeless, finding shelter wasn't an option.

The First Methodist United Church opens its' doors at 8 p.m. to 20 homeless men. Each guest is provided a hot meal, clean sheets and an air mattress.

Roy was one of the 23 men in line on Thursday night.

"It feels like mother nature. If it's winter, you're gonna freeze," said Roy.

It's been a moderate winter by Michiana standards but on nights like Thursday, the cold can kill.

"Cause I did hear that a couple did [freeze]," said Roy. "Outside!"

So far this year, 2 homeless people have died due to the cold. It's a statistic that First United Methodist Church is trying to eliminate.

"Somewhere along the line, the need has increased that means there are new people on the streets and without a warm place to stay in the winters," said David Laughlin, the treasurer of the church. 

But with only 20 beds even this shelter can't help them all. 

"If there's 19 people here and another one comes, that's 20," said Roy. "If two more people come they gonna ask us and we gonna tell them we already have 20 and they're gonna go to burger king or something."

 Lucky for Roy, he was number 17.

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