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Francis House executive director in critical condition

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Friends and family are gathering around Sacramento Francis House Executive Director Greg Bunker in a Santa Barbara hospital after the 62-year-old had a heart attack Monday.

“His condition is very serious and critical,” said Forrest Reed, program director for the nonprofit organization, which provides counseling services to Sacramentans in poverty.

According to Reed, Bunker is on life support and not capable of breathing on his own.

Bunker has been at the helm of Francis House for 21 years, helping rebuild the organization after it burned to the ground, Reed said.

“Greg was the person who was hired that brought Francis House back from the ashes,” Reed said.

The organization celebrated its 40th anniversary in October, and Reed said it is currently looking to raise $250,000 for an expansion project.

“(Bunker) has been the primary advocate for anybody experiencing homelessness and poverty in Sacramento,” Reed said. “He’s been an advocate for Safe Ground to decriminalize homelessness.”

With a full-time staff of three augmented by three volunteers, Reed said Bunker has always been “on the front line,” even running the organization by himself at times.

“Everybody here and everybody that’s been touched by him is praying that he comes back to us,” Reed said. “He’s got a lot of good work to do.”

Brandon Darnell is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press. Photos courtesy Jill Macdonnell.

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