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Community Matters: Veterans Helping Veterans

Arkansas veterans struggling to find stable housing now have a new ally in the community.
LITTLE ROCK, AR - Arkansas veterans struggling to find stable housing now have a new ally in the community.

New furniture, inside a new home.

"Oh Lord that's a good looking mattress."

This is the day John Kendall has waited for for nearly two years.

"I'm sitting back waiting on a miracle."

The last time we spoke to him he was one of roughly 45 veterans forced to vacate the Little Rock Veterans Home.

One of only two in the state closing due to disrepair.

"I was lost. I was totally lost and so were lots of other veterans."

Since then Kendall says he's bounced around from apartments to the streets and from addiction to the edge.

"I attempted suicide with an overdose, I'd given up hope and given up on myself," says Kendall.

But he found others who wouldn't.

"They hit a point where they hit rock bottom and don't see a way out, it's our job as veterans to take care of other veterans and make sure they don't get to that point," says Retired Lt. Colonel Mike Ross.

Ross and volunteers in the newly formed "Veterans Villages of America" are trying to replace the sense of community Kendall and his comrades relied on.

By helping them find housing in the same North Little Rock neighborhoods.

The hope is by moving them closer to a health clinic, a technical college, and one another,

"All these guys were family."

they'll gain strength from their support system.

"Miracles do happen. I can say that in my experience, don't give up, it can happen."

And regain hope for the future.

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