At 67-years old, Robert is retired, but not completely. Though he retired a little more than a year ago, he can’t afford not to work.
“When you’ve had an income and you’ve been able to do and buy… a lot of things that you needed to and you go to not [being] sure what you’re going be able to do in the future. Yeah, it’s concerning,” Robert said.
Robert has worked and served our country throughout his life. Turning to the Food Bank for help is new to him.
He began his service in the U.S. Marines where he was stationed in Vietnam and Okinawa. His duties in Vietnam were split between working in a warehouse and serving as a combat soldier.
“[It] made me realize, in combat, that the soldiers aren’t the only ones having a rough time. [I’m] very sympathetic for civilians that were in Vietnam. It was a terrible situation,” Robert said.
After his service in the marines, Robert went on to work in the horse racetrack and warehouse industry before moving to Texas to join his brother in the Army National Guard.
Since his days in the service, Robert has worked in distribution while his wife worked for the City of Troy and Bruceville-Eddy.
With his wife’s recent retirement as well, the couple is feeling the strain.
While Robert is able to use his VA benefits at the Central Texas Veterans Health Care System to help with his back problems, his wife has been uninsured since retiring. All they can do is hope she stays healthy until she is able to utilize Medicare.
With all the changes, the veteran has turned to substitute teaching to help the family get through the month, but it isn’t enough.
Robert decided to turn to the Food Bank for help after he learned about our Mobile Food Pantry at the VA in Temple from fellow veterans.
After the distribution, he left with staples, protein and fresh produce to take home to his family. As a volunteer himself, for the Wounded Warrior Project, Robert was even more grateful for all the help—from our donors and volunteers- he received from the Food Bank team.
“I’m very appreciative of what they’re doing. It’s not just the food, but the time that they’re putting in as well,” Robert said.