Eric builds a lasting foundation.

Because of you, this Air Force Veteran has the tools he needs to thrive.

United States Air Force Veteran Eric has a kind and gentle demeanor about him. He served in the Air Force in the early 2000’s at Langley Air Force Base and in Germany.

“I had a relatively successful life after I came home. I worked at a correctional facility for about five years. I joined a church, met my wife, and had two daughters. We had a house, two-car garage… everything I thought I wanted at the time.”

But as time went on, Eric didn’t feel happy in his marriage and asked for a divorce.

“I wasn’t sure where my life was going at the time, and I suddenly found myself sitting alone in my house a lot.”

Eric wasn’t able to see his daughters as often anymore and he missed them. And while he knew a divorce was the best choice for him and his ex-wife, Eric’s parents struggled to understand his decision.

Feeling isolated and alone, Eric found drugs as an outlet to channel the way he felt. When he realized drugs were beginning to take over his life, he didn’t get the family support he had hoped for.

“It was at that point that I kind of spiraled.”

The next two years were some of the most challenging times of Eric’s life. He didn’t see his daughters at all during that time. He continued to turn to drugs for answers and eventually became homeless.

“I lost hope. I was on the street. I was cold and afraid, and I didn’t know what was next.”

His mental health was suffering, and he knew he needed help immediately. Eric knew he wanted to be there for his daughters, that was the only thing that mattered to him in those moments. In an instant, he got on a bus and went to the VA where he was given a place to rest and start his recovery journey. From there, he was connected to Volunteers of America Veterans Resource Center, a place where he could heal and rebuild his life, surrounded by other veterans experiencing similar challenges.

“I have a good support system here. They are compassionate and listen to what I’m going through. I feel as though I owe Volunteers of America so much.”

Today, Eric has a job and is working towards living independently. He enjoys playing and watching sports of all kinds. But, most of all he loves connecting with his daughters over Zoom and can’t wait for the day he gets to spend time with them in person.

“I’m never going to turn my back on my daughters. I want them to know that as long as I’m here, they’re never alone. They are my reason for being here.”

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