In the darkest of times, we often need the help of others to pull us into the light. When Army-Navy veteran (’78-’83) Lonie Scott contacted Permian Warrior Partnership (PWP) for support after losing his job, Case Coordinator Breanna Durner sensed there was more under the surface he was struggling with.
Workforce services contacted PWP about a veteran struggling to find a job and communicated that they would reach out. After a few days, Case Coordinator Durner informed them that she had not heard anything, and later that day, she received a call from Lonie. Breanna began the intake process with Lonie, who mentioned that he had lost his job of 9 years when they closed their doors in August. He had been applying for jobs with no luck and was recently informed that his unemployment was ending in two weeks. Lonie was already behind on rent and had maxed out his credit cards.
This was when Lonie began to get upset and told Breanna he was embarrassed for reaching out. Breanna reassured Lonie that her job was to help him and that there was no need to be embarrassed. He then mentioned that he struggles with depression and Bipolar. Breanna asked Lonie if he was on any medication, but he told her he could not afford them because he lost his insurance when he lost his job and was not enrolled in VA healthcare.
Further on in the conversation, Lonie started saying things that concerned Breanna. She asked if he had heard of the 988 Veteran Suicide Hotline, and he said no. She then asked if he would be okay with a 3-way with them, and he agreed.
After the call, Breanna checked in with Lonie every day for a few weeks. Breanna worked with a local VSO to enroll Lonie in the VA healthcare system, and he now gets his monthly medications. Breanna also worked with a local resource to supply him with a food box. After Lonie negotiated a timeline with the landlord, he was able to catch up on his rent and his landlord agreed to remove the late fees. Recently, Lonie got the news that his VA claim was approved with a 70% disability rating so he will begin receiving that income soon. Breanna still checks in with Lonie on a weekly basis and is proud of the progress he has already been making from when they first spoke.
If you or someone you know is struggling, there is no shame in getting help. The Suicide & Crisis Lifeline provides 24-hour, confidential support to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Dial 988 and press 1 for the Veteran Crisis Line, text 838255, or chat online with a support counselor at https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/
The Permian Basin is stronger when our veterans are stronger. Connect with PWP to learn more about how you can give back to the Permian veteran community by visiting our website and completing an online form: http://permianwarriorpartnership.org