‘I Didn’t Want Much, Just Something’

The VFW Unmet Needs program helps Army veteran in his time of need

Patrick Byrne, 40, lives in Greensboro, North Carolina, with his wife, Jennifer, and their three children, Patrick, Finnegan and Amelia. In college, he joined the ROTC before serving in the Army for nine years.

Patrick was stationed in Georgia, North Carolina and Alaska and completed deployments to Iraq and Afghanistan. Now, years later, he manages several health conditions related to his service.

Welcome Home Kiss“Similar to many who deployed to the Middle East, I have a variety of chronic respiratory issues,” he said. “Also, my last airborne jump was by far the worst. I landed hard enough to sustain a concussion. Today, I act as an advocate for fellow service members to find the best care.”

Recently, Patrick was laid off from his job, and it was taking longer than he’d hoped to find something else.

“I researched ways I could get help as time kept passing and finances grew tighter and tighter,” he said.

Patrick found the VFW Unmet Needs program and applied. He said the application process was straightforward and the support was deeply appreciated. But, like many veterans, Patrick found it difficult to ask for help.

“It was humbling,” he said. “I didn’t want much, just something.”

Patrick used the aid to cover a payment on the car he uses to get to interviews and meetings in his job search. He encourages people to donate to the VFW and other veteran-focused nonprofits because he knows the difference their generosity makes.

“I am extremely thankful,” Patrick said. “I wish I could visit those who made the assistance possible to give you a hug and big thanks.”

Learn more about the VFW’s Unmet Needs program.