Steven was 17 when he enlisted in the Navy in 1997. After more than nine years, he honorably left the service only to suffer as mental illness and addiction began taking control of his life.
Rising to the rank of Second Class Petty Officer, Steven oversaw 30 cooks and was responsible for feeding 3,000 servicemen and women four times a day. He also saw conflict while transporting Marines and Special Forces into war zones.
By 2006, after completing four tours of duty, he began experiencing anxiety and paranoia. "I didn’t know what was wrong with me," Steven explains.
Unable to work, he found himself homeless and destitute until entering a VA short-term residential and recovery program. Steven then transferred to Community Hope’s Hope for Veterans® Program where he now works at an on-campus café and receives wrap-around services.
"A Link to Ending Veteran Homelessness"
appeared in the September/October issue of the national publication of the Disabled American Veterans' magazine and is featured on DAV's website.