USA Cares might have missed Liam Duncan’s note if not for a keen-eyed
staff member who scrolled to the bottom of the Air Force veteran’s donation
Liam had submitted the comment along with his very first donation to the organization. It had just been a few weeks since USA Cares assisted his own family of six with two months of rent.
“I’m not totally caught up yet, but one of the first things I thought of was, and this is legitimately what I thought, is that they saved my neck,” Liam said. “I can at least give them a couple of bucks.”
Liam reached out to USA Cares in October of 2023. At the time, he was in his fourth month of unemployment after his contract as a private contractor for an overseas company was terminated.
“The first month or so wasn’t terribly bad because the company paid me a little to help keep me going to find a job,” Liam said.
But finding new employment proved more difficult than Liam had predicted.
“I put out 437 resumes in four months,” Liam said. “I know exactly how many I did because I saved all of them in a folder. I had a total of four interviews, four interviews out of 437.”
While Liam desperately searched for income, his family’s savings were quickly running out. Eventually, the bills got behind.
“They turned off our phone a couple times,” Liam remembered. “The power went on and off a couple times, too, but we got those taken care of. The big thing was rent. $1,400 is a lot harder to handle than a $200 phone
Liam’s landlord granted the Duncans extra time to pay October’s rent, but soon one month’s rent turned into two. Liam had found a new job but he wasn’t supposed to start until after November’s rent was due.
“I originally asked USA Cares for help with our late rent, but we would’ve still been at risk for eviction,” Liam said. “Technically, according to our lease, my family and I should’ve been evicted for a while.”
Liam said the landlord received the check from USA Cares just three days before they would have had to file for eviction.
While chatting on the phone with USA Cares, Liam shared that he had just paid December’s rent and was working on his company computer while watching his 18-month-old play on the floor.
He elected to have a recurring donation to USA Cares every month.
“All the grace and kindness and patience I was shown, it deserves repayment of some kind,” Liam said. “There’s going to be someone else that needs help one day, and I want to make sure that I did my part, no matter how little, to give someone else all of that.”
*name has been changed