Alphonse Boudard; Prize-Winning French Writer
Alphonse Boudard, 74, French writer who brought his rough youth on the streets to his novels. An illegitimate child born in Paris, Boudard grew up living on the streets with petty criminals. He often joked that he was bilingual--speaking French and slang. He became a writer after a four-year stint in jail for burglary, publishing his first novel, "The Metamorphosis of the Woodlice" in 1962. The next year, his novel "The Cherry" won the Sainte-Beuve prize. Another well-received novel, "The Fighters for Small Happiness," earned him the Renaudot prize in 1977, and in 1995 the Academie Francaise awarded a prize for his book "To Die From Childhood." President Jacques Chirac said in a statement that Boudard "was one of these authors who give our language rhythm, color and vigor." On Friday in Nice of heart and respiratory problems.
Bishop John R. Bradley; Aided the Homeless
Bishop John R. Bradley, 69, who aided drug abusers and the poor. An ordained minister of the Church of the Holy Ghost, Bradley supported himself as a house painter until he was diagnosed with lead poisoning in 1977. With his wife, Pearl, Bradley founded the University of Holy Ghost Theology and Outreach Mission Inc. in 1973 in a storefront on South Central Avenue in Los Angeles. The couple quickly developed a reputation for helping the helpless and hopeless--taking in hungry and homeless families and individuals and those addicted to drugs. They fed them and gave them a temporary roof over their heads while helping to find shelter, medical help and jobs. Nearby businesses and residents complained, however, of loud electronic music from their religious services and said the mission was a flophouse for undesirable characters. Bradley, who spent his own money to aid those he took in, welcomed frequent referrals from the Los Angeles County Department of Social Services. Nevertheless, he faced constant threats from the Los Angeles County health department for violations of the health code. "These folks coming through here have been on the street," he said. "We've got to clean them up. And we do, but they bring it in with 'em." Despite the continuing hassles, Bradley pursued his dream of what he always called "the Lord's work." On Jan. 7 in Los Angeles.