US Army and Disabled Veteran and now cancer survivor, 39-year-old Monica has devoted her entire adult life to the United States Military. She enlisted in the Michigan Reserves the same year she graduated from high school (1992) and served until 2002.
After a debilitating back injury, she was honorably discharged and put on disability. However, she keeps giving and giving and giving to her beloved US military and veteran community.
Her telephone number is known throughout the veteran community as a 33-hour per week AmeriCorps volunteer. “Needs just dont come up from 9 to 5”, says Monica, “I’m here to help whenever a need arises. A flat tire, mental health issue, housing needs or anything else that a veteran needs.”
Monica also has her bachelor’s degree from Mercy College in corporate and homeland security and now is getting a second master’s degree in marriage and family counseling with a specialization in military and veterans.
2012 also brought with it a lymphoma diagnosis and subsequent bone marrow transplant and back surgery in 2013 she continues to remain cancer-free as of February 2016. “I thank God every day that I am still cancer-free”, explains Monica. “Out of the 8 of us that had transplants together, there are only two of us still alive.”
Fellow members of Oakland Countys Veterans Community Action Team (VCAT) decided she was the local veteran who could and should benefit for Habitat for Humanity of Oakland County homeownership.
She did qualify for homeownership and currently has a Habitat Oakland County home refurbishment in progress in Hazel Park with her home closing expected during Summer 2016.