Large moving trucks backed in to an apartment complex, Wednesday, on North Holmes Avenue on Indianapolis’ west side.
Bundled up to fight the freezing temperatures, volunteers unloaded tables, chairs and bed frames. The furniture is going in the new, 75-unit Lincoln Apartments for veterans currently living on the street or facing homelessness, such as Steve Thompson.
"We serve our country. We protect our people here in America and for a lot of years, we are just like, 'What about us? Did you forget about us?,'" said Thompson. "You have us going over to different places, taking care of business, protecting this country, protecting other countries, but what about us?"
Thompson served in the Marines from 1976-1984.
After struggling through some challenging times, he and his wife of 10 years are moving into the new furnished apartment complex, and believes permanent housing will help get their lives back on track.
"It's beautiful. It just feels like home," he said. "It's very nice and the way the people that are working out here - they are doing a good job - and I am going to live very comfortable here."
The apartments are located on land donated by the city and also include staffed supportive services and community rooms.
Director of Community Engagement for Volunteers of America Indiana, Mary Leffler says there has always been a shortage of permanent housing for veterans in Marion County and believes the apartment complex gives them a chance at a fresh start.
"You can't really move on in any other phase of your life if you don't know where you are going to sleep at night," Leffler said. "Now they have one less worry. Now they can begin to look at the resources we intend to connect them with, employment assistance, there is the treatment and counseling they are getting at the VA. Now they can concentrate on those other pieces of the puzzle that will eventually help them move from support housing to economic self-sufficiency."
Residents will start moving in to the apartments December 1.