Veteran Helps Homeless Veterans

Jim Schlenker sat down for an interview in the newsroom. (Photo by Leslie Stratmoen)
Jim Schlenker sat down for an interview in the newsroom. (Photo by Leslie Stratmoen)

A local veteran needs help furnishing homes for other veterans.

News Director Leslie Stratmoen has the report.

They battled in the field oversees and now some veterans are still battling at home, with health and financial problems.

Sympathizing with them is Jim Schlenker of Sheridan. He's a veteran, himself, who has transformed his hard times into easier ones for others, by helping the homeless veterans set up a place to live.

He works with HUD/VASH, or the Housing and Urban Development/Veterans Affairs Supported Housing program, to find furniture and appliances for veterans who've come to Sheridan because of the veteran's medical services, then decided to stay.

He's helped to house a dozen people recently, he said, and six in the past couple of weeks.

So, he said, they're in great need of “stuff and storage.”

He said the veterans he helps are both men and women, ages 30-80, and represent all branches of the service. But, he said, he couldn't provide the support without the help from the Salvation Army, Elks club, DAV or Disabled American Veterans association or the American Legion, of which he is a member.

Serving homeless veterans in this way is a mission that means a great deal to him, he said. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1970-79. But after coming to Sheridan, going to school, getting married and having a family, he fell on hard times.

He said he could also use some help with moving the furniture. So, he said to sign on or to donate, just contact him through the VA or Salvation Army. His phone number is 751-2884.

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