Robin Brodie

U.S. Army veteran Robin Brodie (65 years old) first moved into our Maple Court Veteran Housing program in Durham in March 2023. He had recently been discharged from surgery on both of his knees and needed a place to call home where he could recover and retire in peace. 

Robin first joined the Army Reserves in 1977 when he was 18 years old. He was stationed at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri. During training, he injured both knees.ees. As time went on, his knees got progressively worse leading to his discharge from service in 1980. 

Robin was supposed to receive a medical discharge, but was given an honorable discharge by mistake. This made it difficult for him to access the full array of benefits available to veterans who are injured during their time of service. This would place an unnecessary financial burden on Robin as he got older. 

After being discharged, Robin worked for the U.S. Post Office for a while before transitioning to IBM. There, he started as a packer and operated forklifts at one of IBM’s warehouses. Working his way up the chain, Robin eventually became an assistant warehouse manager.  

Robin worked diligently throughout his life and was very proud of his work. But as he aged, the pain in his knees made it difficult to do work that required him to regularly be on his feet. As he neared retirement, he was also still struggling to gain full access to his VA benefits. Eventually, Robin needed to shift to part-time work. As his medical bills started to pile up, this created a strain on his finances and would eventually lead to homelessness. 

In 2023, Robin became delinquent on his rental payments and was evicted from his apartment. This happened just before he was scheduled for surgery on his knees. He knew that this would mean he would have nowhere to go after being discharged from the hospital. That’s when Robin was connected to Volunteers of America and our Maple Court program. 

“Maple Court is a dream come true. So, long as I do what I’m supposed to do, I don’t need to worry about having a roof over my head. The managerial people are helpful and kind. And the apartments are very nice. They will help you with whatever they can. And if they can’t help you, they will find out who you need to get in touch with to help you.” 

In addition to providing Robin a place to call home, our staff have been helping him navigate securing his disability benefits. And although Robin’s knees are still weak and he occasionally experiences pain, he is thankful to have a comfortable apartment that is cool during the summers and warm during the winters. 

“I want to thank Volunteers of America for being there for veterans like me. I don’t know where I would have been without them..”

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