Catholic Charities Veteran Services helps veterans and their families who are experiencing homelessness or at risk of homelessness find stable housing and provides ongoing case management that includes financial planning, assistance applying for VA benefits, emergency assistance and more.

Friday, 09 November 2018

Stranded, Retired Marine Finds Hope

He served proudly as a Marine, for more than 20 years ... It was a bittersweet day for John when he retired, as a sergeant major — but he wasn’t finished serving America’s cause. He would head back here to Arizona, where he grew up, to work at the VA Hospital in Prescott.

He smiled as he made that cross-country trip, remembering his happy childhood here ... and knowing how, after his decades serving to protect our country and preserve our freedoms, he had planned his future carefully. Nailed down the new job. Budgeted and saved for the move and for expenses during the first few weeks in Prescott, until his first paycheck came in.

But in a flash, it was all over.

The Best Made Plans…

IMG 5808 275 183He had gotten as far as Utah when his car died. The towing, the repairs, the lodging while he waited for the work to be done ... In only a few days — days of panic and anguish — his carefully tended nest egg was all but gone.

His Marine’s survival instincts kicked in. Knowing he was on his last few dollars, he didn’t want to spend anything on food. And then — the killer blow: The job he’d been promised ... wasn’t there.

“Administrative error.”

Suddenly — without warning — John was homeless ... broke ... hungry ... hopeless. No friends. No family. Forced to live in his car.

A Hand Up When John Needed It Most

But then you stepped into John’s story. Someone at the VA pointed him to us, with five life-changing words: Catholic Charities will help you.

And we could — because of you. Your support for our work opened our door to John, in his most desperate hour.

Thanks to you, we were able to take him in ... reassure him ... provide him with nutritious food ... help him connect with safe shelter ...

In fact, because of friends like you, we were able to commit to bridging the gap for him for three crucial months — with a bed and household items, a simple table and chairs — till he could find work — save up — and get back up on his own two feet.

If you ask John about that moment of rescue, even today, tears come to his eyes. “Without Catholic Charities, I don’t know what would have happened to me,” he says.

Today, he’s working a steady job. He’s in college! And he’s still committed to serving, as he has his whole life. He wants to bless others as he has been blessed. He calls it a “chain of blessing.”

Click here to become a part of that “chain of blessing” for another veteran in desperate need today.

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