Ex-Homeless Man Struggles To Make A Living Shining Shoes, Refuses To Accept Government Help

06/15/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

When The San Francisco Chronicle reported that homeless man Larry Moore was trying to make a living by opening a shoe shine stand, the community pitched in to help Moore afford the $400 fee for a permit. Other San Franciscans even helped Moore find a place to live with inexpensive monthly rent.

"I told him he's been a beacon of hope," [friend Travis] See said. "He's a friendly reminder that San Francisco has a forgiving heart. We're a city of second chances ... and I'm betting it is a better place with him around. To me, Larry is a world class fighter who's lost many battles, but keeps showing up."

Now, months later, the Chronicle reports Moore is off the streets, working six days a week shining shoes in order to afford his rent. Although it would have been easier for Moore not to work, therefore qualifying him for Supplemental Security Income, he is happy to support himself and not have to rely on government assistance.

His independence has its drawbacks he recently realized when he received a business tax bill for $368.10 from the city of San Francisco. Although he can hardly afford the bill, Moore stays positive.

"I don't mind paying taxes," Moore said. "It gives me something to complain about. There are a lot of things to learn about being a legitimate person."