Homeless veteran shares his story ahead of Veteran’s Day

MONROE, La. (KNOE) - "I'm very appreciative, I can't tell you...I appreciate God for putting these people in my life," Joe Cooper, a navy veteran.

Navy veteran Joe Cooper shares his story with KNOE. He's currently staying at the Salvation Army while he waits for a housing voucher. Source: (KNOE)

Cooper thanked those who’ve helped him along the way. He said life hasn’t been easy after getting involved with drugs and crime.

"I got involved in drugs at an early age and as a result of that I've led an up and down life," Cooper said.

Cooper is just one of the thousands of homeless veterans in the United States. According to a report from End Homelessness, veterans make up 9% of all homeless adults.
He said he’s it’s been a constant journey to find a place of his own.

"I fell into something like a homeless cycle," Cooper said.
He’s been with the Salvation Army in Monroe for a week now but has been with the WellSpring for months beforehand. He’s currently waiting on a housing voucher from Health Care for Homeless Veterans.

"This is a place really for me to just wait until these people can get all of their logistics together and really help me get my own place," Cooper said.

He said it's important to remember veterans especially those caught in the homeless crisis.

"With the same spirit that made America what it is today, some are going to make it some are not," Cooper said.

With the help of multiple workers and organizations, Cooper said he’s hopeful that he’ll soon have a place of his own.

"That's their job and they take pride in what they do, and every time they house a homeless veteran it's like they scored a touchdown in a big game," Cooper said.

For more information on how to help at-risk or homeless veterans call 1-877-424-3838 or click here .