Mt. Pleasant's 'newspaper man' Hassie recovering in hospital

Hassie Holmes. (Source: Vote Mark Smith Facebook page)

MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCIV) -- A man who's proven to be a fixture on the side of Houston Northcutt Boulevard and Highway 17 in Mount Pleasant is recovering in a hospital bed.

Mount Pleasant Police said they responded to Emergency Management treating Hassie Holmes, the dreadlocked and bearded man who sells newspapers almost every day of the week outside the Hardee's, last Saturday.

According to some reports, Holmes was injured in a car accident and his health deteriorated in the days after. However, police said they found no evidence that Holmes had been hit by a car.

Instead, police said neighbors told them Holmes had been sleeping on the porch of his mother's old home in Mount Pleasant. She and his brother moved to Atlanta several months ago.

ABCNews4 talked to Holmes in 1995 while he stood on what was then a median and sold newspapers.

"Every body knows him," said Charlie Gamble, who manages the Capital Bank on Johnnie Dodds Boulevard.

"He's like a Mount Pleasant staple," Mike Rumph said.

As the news and Mount Pleasant changed, Holmes stayed in place until now. In the hospital, he's become the headline, and many sent their love.

Friends said Holmes checked himself in to the hospital Sunday. An incident report shows it took some convincing on the part of friends and police officers to get him into a hospital bed.

Police also called someone from Adult Protective Services to check on Holmes earlier this week.

"I know he's like a stalwart here," Justin Nathanson said.

Nathanson promised to buy a newspaper from Holmes as soon as he returned.

"Buddy you're a part of the community I really hope you're feeling well. Come back out. We need you and the community needs you here," Nathanson said.

"Get well soon. Come on back I need a newspaper," Gamble said.

And it seems, something he told us in 1995, still holds true today.

"I guess that's why I'm doing this: to prove a point to myself. Does hard work pay? I can say yes, it does," he said.

On Wednesday, the Mark Smith for Town Council Facebook page posted a quote from Holmes: "I'm not sure when I will get out, but I'm thankful that the sun came up today."

The Capital Bank on Johnnie Dodds has set up an account for Holmes' bills in his name. People can donate in person or by mail.