Veteran given mortgage-free home

- Manny Guevara Ruiz was among the first soldiers in Iraq in 2003 and served for 12 years before a medical discharge. He, like many veterans, suffered from PTSD and struggled back home.

“It’s been a long time of struggling and trying to get to a place where we could be at peace,” said wife Erica.

Now Manny and his family are going from homeless to homeowners. The Veterans Association of Real Estate Professionals (VAREP), along with Bank of America, recently helped the Tampa family with a new mortgage-free home.

The association has donated 18 mortgage-free homes and placed over 750 veterans in homes through their programs like this one.

Although soldiers are accustomed to moving from base to base and place to place, this is more than just a roof over their heads.

“The very first time ever that we’ll be able to host Thanksgiving,” said Manny.  “And there’s a cherry on the top -- it’s our home.”

Veterans give their service, and sometimes give their lives. We don’t all have homes to give, but even if you can give anything or your appreciation -- they deserve it. 

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