November 9, 2018

Mel is a 64 year old Army veteran and lives in a one bedroom apartment in senior housing in San Francisco. By the way he talks, or rather doesn't talk, about his past you can tell life wasn’t always easy for him. Mel spent his early years in the Midwest and bouncing around between different relatives from Kansas, to Denver, and Chicago. He was trying to find his footing and a place to belong as while facing the urban challenges of a troubled youth.

At age 18, Mel joined the Job Corps or a year and then spent five years in the US Army. After his service was complete, Mel settled in Long Beach. He was doing well for awhile but found himself slipping back into some of the old habits that got him in trouble during his younger years.

In 1989, he made the decision to relocate in the San Francisco Bay Area to remove himself from his old life. He began a career as an asbestos and insulation installer and earned his contractor and supervisor license and certification while on the job. From the way Mel speaks about his work, he clearly has a strong work ethic and prefers to keep busy. Being busy keeps him out of trouble!

Thanks to Meals on Wheels, Mel’s diabetes is under control. He wishes he were more mobile so he could do more activities like grocery shopping and other outings. He enjoys cooking when he is able and feeling well; chicken is his specialty!

Mel had very little furniture when he moved in to his apartment in the Bayview three years ago. He is very grateful to the Home Depot Foundation for providing a much better bed that eases his back pain and gives him a more comfortable place to sleep. Plus, the dining table and chairs are a great addition - especially for those times when he can enjoy his own cooking!