“I’m living large now. You know? I’m living large,” formerly homeless Army veteran Tony Jones told ABC News‘ Jonathan Karl with a smile.
You may remember Jones from when we first introduced you to him in December, when he was living in a makeshift tent on the southeast side of Washington, D.C.
With help from advocates at Miriam’s Kitchen, an organization dedicated to ending homelessness, Jones was able to put a close to more than six years of homelessness after securing a voucher from the Veterans Administration to pay rent for an apartment.
“In the past two and a half years, we’ve housed 1,500 veterans in Washington, D.C.,” Emily Buzzell, Jones’s caseworker at Miriam’s Kitchen said. “And we expect that we will be able to end veteran homelessness by the end of this year.”
D.C. has seen success in combating veteran homelessness because of a concerted effort involving federal and local governments working with private sector activists.
“I’ve got some beautiful friends. I’ve got some good people behind me,” Jones said as he scanned his fully furnished apartment, surrounded by his neighbors and friends. As Jones stood smiling in the yard outside his hilltop apartment building, he gazed out at the city below.
“It’s an awesome view,” Jones said with pride. “On top of the world.”
ABC News’ Jonathan Karl checks in on former homeless veteran Tony Jones, three months after moving into his new apartment. (Photo: Gary Westphalen/ABC News)