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Couple finds love, prepares to get married after recovering from homelessness

'Everybody has a purpose, as long as you have a heartbeat,' Margaret Denton says
Margaret Denton and Jerry Maxwell, couple weds after recovering from homelessness in West Palm Beach
Posted at 4:31 PM, Aug 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-27 17:40:29-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — A Palm Beach County couple who are recovering addicts, spent time in jail and ended up homeless have paved a new life for themselves.

It's all thanks to the help from the Lord's Place in West Palm Beach.

"Everybody has a purpose, as long as you have a heartbeat," Margaret Denton said.

Jerry Maxwell and Denton walked hand in hand Friday at Kayak Park in Lantana.

They were set to be married Friday, but the journey was challenging.

Kayak Park is where Maxwell spent many days homeless, sleeping on a bench after being released from jail.

Lyman Kayak Park in Lantana
Jerry Maxwell says he spent many days sleeping in Kayak Park before his recovery.

His situation became so bad that he even thought about doing the unthinkable.

"Being homeless can mess with your mind and be hungry. I was standing in front of the train and had very bad thoughts," Maxwell said.

However, he said something within him that made him pull back. He then found the Lord's Place, which helped him get back on his feet.

"They didn't look down upon me. They believed in me when I didn't believe in myself," Maxwell said.

"I really wanted to stay sober. I just didn't know how to do it. I thought I was just going to be conditioned to alcoholism, addiction on the streets and eventually die," Denton said.

She shared a similar experience to Maxwell.

Bench in Lyman Kayak Park in Lantana
Jerry asked Margaret to be his girlfriend on the same bench that he slept on when he was homeless.

Eventually, she would seek help from the Lord's Place to turn her life around. That's where she met Maxwell, and a relationship began.

"I would ride my bike for an hour to get halfway from her halfway house and to come here and have conversations and get to know one another," Maxwell said.

Maxwell asked Denton to be his girlfriend on the same bench that he slept on when he was homeless. Two years ago he proposed, and they were set to be married Friday.

"This is what happens. You get family and relationships back. You'll get amazing people in your life," Maxwell said.

"Honestly, I figured, you know, I left everybody alone in my addiction. I left my kids with my ex-husband. I didn't contact my family, and they would be better off without me. But that's not true. They are all here for the wedding. It's crazy," Denton said.