Homeless man mourned on Capitol Hill

Aug. 22, 2012 at 2:30 PM

WASHINGTON, Aug. 22 (UPI) -- A homeless Washington man is being mourned by locals in the nation's capital in the form of a makeshift shrine and plans for a memorial service.

People who frequently pass by the Capitol Hill corner where Peter Bis would spend his days said the 61-year-old man seemed intelligent and friendly, if likely schizophrenic, The Washington Post reported Wednesday.

"This is so sad. He spoke to everybody. He made you smile," Senate Foreign Relations Committee staffer Emily Mendrala said of Bis, who died of an apparent heart attack last week.

Friends said a lawyer appointed by the courts to be Bis' guardian last year is marking arrangements for him to be cremated and his ashes sent to a brother in Kalamazoo, Mich.

Passersby said they will remember Bis for his claims to have been Princess Diana's former lover and a former aerospace magnate, as well as his catchphrases, which included "It's 10 a.m., tea time in London, cocktails in Singapore," and "No skinny-dipping!"

A shrine has been set up at Bis' corner for his acquaintances to drop off flowers, packs of Camel cigarettes and notes addressed to the deceased. A memorial service was being planned at nearby St. Joseph's Church.

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