SPRINGFIELD, Mo- Over the Veterans Day weekend many take time to pay respects to those who have served our country in the line of duty.
One of those veterans has a story you don’t hear much. Meet McKinnely Fausett, a formerly homeless Army veteran. Fausett decided to join the service because he wanted to have something to claim as his own in life.
Fausett served in the Army from 2006-2008 and was stationed in the states, due to a medical issue though, he had to leave.
“I came back home pretty much started my from where I left off, got jobs, had my place.”
Everything was going well for Fausett and his family, his significant other and seven children, until one of their kids started having some issues. Both parents had to take off time from work to help them. To make matters worse, they had a difficult landlord and lost a court battle that landed the family of nine homeless at Busiek State Forest.
“We stayed in Busiek for about a month and a half. We told the little kids we were just camping to keep them from knowing the true situation and getting depressed.”
Fausett says they were able to stay on the campground with a permit. He says they tried to make the best of their situation and would have to change activities depending on the weather.
Fausett was able to work during this time and because of the kind heart of his boss, the family was able to move into an RV and pay the rent for them.
“We would’ve been staying in our cars or crashing at people’s houses for two years. We stayed for about a year and a half, we were in the RV.”
Fausett says they were in the RV until this September when they received some help and an actual home from Home At Last, a program put on by The Kitchen.
He wants to let those who have homes know that it is hard being homeless whether you’re in the city or the country.
“When people say ‘oh that persons homeless but they can do so much better if they try,’ well they may be trying. You don’t know that, you don’t know their back story and for people to judge it’s wrong.”
Fausett wants to encourage people to go and seek out homeless veterans and just speak to them or offer them some food. He says that gesture may be the highlight of their month.
“Just remember, we’re going to have veterans every time, cause the wars not over, the fights not over. We’re going to have them coming home and some of them don’t have anything to turn to, we can make that better by giving them something to look forward to when they get home,” says Fausett.