Changing Veterans Lives

Jeff Leach, Rural Veterans Health Coordinator, says it is a miracle to see how much progress Cory Gosey has made in a short period time. Jeff first met Cory in the Sabine Parish Jail after he received a call from Judge Beasley in April saying he had a Veteran in need.

“Cory was barefoot and beat down” Leach said. “Cory really needed help, so I drove him to the VA for medical treatment. At the time of his release, we didn’t have a place for him to live in any of our residential facilities for Veterans, so we coordinate for him to stay at the Salvation Army until a bed opened”.

Cory grew up in a small town in Northwest Louisiana and joined the Marines right after high school. He was injured in boot camp and along with other personal tragedies at a young age, he could not handle the pressure. He began hanging out with the wrong crowd and turning to drugs to help ease the physical and emotional pain. This resulted in a failed marriage and relationship with his only son leading to anger and depression. Gosey recalls, “I was so paranoid because of using meth. I couldn’t sleep and I purchased a pistol thinking everyone was following me all the time”. After 3 criminal arrest and spending time in the VA’s 9th floor psych ward, Gosey knew he needed to make a change.

Now, Cory lives in Volunteers of America’s Transitional Living Facility. This 56-bed program provides the basics of food, shelter and support, and physical and mental health needs are taken care of by the VA. All clients are required to save a portion of their income and either work, go to school or complete community service during the day in hope of helping Veterans transition into living more independent lives.

Cory says meeting Jeff and living at the home has given him a positive outlook. In his free time, he cuts grass and provides lawn service free of charge around the community. “It makes me happy when people thank me for helping them. I feel so blessed to have a great circle of people helping me live a better lifestyle”. In 5 years, he hopes to be a better dad restoring the relationship with his son and own his own lawn care business.

Cory is one of many Veterans making their way to Volunteers of America of North Louisiana. Veteran services were established in 2010 and include transitional and permanent housing, counseling and legal assistance. Together, we are changing Veterans lives.

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