Scott never expected to find himself in the position he’s in today. Growing up in West Covina, life was pretty good for him. “I came from a family where we all made money,” he says. “I didn’t know what suffering was about in those days.”
After separating from his wife, Scott decided to move in with his grandmother and take care of her. While he was living there, he suffered a heart attack which kept him from working. When his grandmother passed away a short time later, Scott was unable to make her house payments, and he made his way out to Pasadena. After his savings was used up on motel stays, Scott spent the next 18 years homeless. During this time, he developed cataracts in both eyes, rendering him blind, and he lost most of his teeth.
It wasn’t until Scott was dropped off at Union Station’s Adult Center that things began to improve for him. Jonathan, his care coordinator, was able to take him to appointments with an eye doctor, and eventually Scott was able to have corrective surgery in one eye. “Jonathan was the first person I saw after the bandages came off,” Scott recalls. He was also able to have his teeth repaired while living at the Adult Center.
Before long, Scott was able to move into his own apartment with the help of their housing program. Scott looks back on the process with satisfaction. “At Union Station, all you have to do is wait for the opportunity,” he says. “It might not happen as quickly as you want it to, but it’s going to happen. And you have a place to live until then. I don’t see how anyone can lose in that situation.”
After 18 years of homelessness, Scott now has a home, as well as a fridge and freezer full of food. “It’s been good since I moved into housing. I’ve put on weight, my personality’s changed, I’m more relaxed, happier.” On top of this, Scott says the apartment manager really likes him as well: “I’m always the first person to pay rent each month.”
Angry and feeling inadequate, John’s early bad judgments and bouts with drugs and alcohol found him at age 33 living in his car.
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