U.S. Army Veteran Craig Browder joined the Army when he was finishing high school.
“The day I graduated (High school) in 1990 was the day that Sadam Hussein invaded Kuwait and we all wondered if we would get deployed,” said Browder.
He served in the Army and Indiana National Guard for 22 years.
“My grandmother always said I was her knight in shining armor and that I grew up in the wrong century because I always try to help people and never ask for anything,” said Browder. “That’s why I stayed in for so long and kept re-enlisting…I felt like I was helping people.”
Following his time in the military, Browder struggled for a few years without gainful employment, making it difficult to move forward. When the opportunity for him and his wife to move to Colorado with a friend of his was offered, they took the opportunity.
“After a couple years in the same house, we started butting heads” said Browder, “then we found out my wife’s mom was going into hospice care and she wanted to come back to Indiana.”
Browder and his wife returned to Indiana with nowhere to go. Browder’s wife made all the calls to get them connected with HVAF where they met with GPD Director Doneeka Gunn.
“Second day we were here, we met with Miss Doneeka and right off the bat, she made us feel welcome,” said Browder.
They lived in one of the Temporary Housing Units until finding their own place with the help of HVAF’s Rapid Re-Housing Team. While living there, Browder spent time participating in the Urban Garden program to help manage his coping skills. Browder and his wife just moved into an apartment of their own.
“HVAF helped us pay the security deposit and the rent, went and got us some furniture,” said Browder, “I mean, it’s great having our own place!”