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Stranger pays year’s rent for Cincinnati veteran who feared losing home

‘I can’t explain it, I’m just overjoyed.’
Published: Jun. 14, 2022 at 8:50 PM CDT
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CINCINNATI (WXIX) - A disabled US combat veteran and his wife are no longer living in fear of losing their home after a stranger paid their rent for an entire year.

James Bolin, a veteran of the Gulf War, suffers from PTSD and frequent seizures that prevent him from driving or cooking for himself. He lives on a fixed income with his wife, Cristy, in the Emerald Pines Mobile Park.

The couple have called the park home for nearly 22 years, but a change in ownership and inflationary pressures prompted an increase in rents, putting James and Cristy in danger of being forced out.

Cristy had stopped working to help take care of her husband of 15 years, but recently she was forced to return to the labor force.

“I’m just really stressed, having to go back to work, leaving him [James] alone,” she told FOX19 in a story that aired last week. “He could aspirate and die.”

Even then, the situation was dire. Said Cristy, “We can’t make it without my income, with him being a disabled veteran and on a fixed income, we can’t make it.”

But a Good Samaritan saw that story and stepped up in a big way, paying the couple’s rent for the next year.

That stranger is John Boyd, owner of Boyd Heating and Cooling.

“I’m just glad that I’m able to help somebody, make a difference in somebody else’s life,” Boyd said. “I mean that. That’s what we’re here for.”

James, upon hearing of Boyd’s generosity, initially balked, saying the money should go to someone else more deserving. But the check had already been written, and when James heard that, he started to cry.

“You look at the country and the shape it’s in, and you say, ‘Now, what was I fighting for?’ Today, you reminded me,” James said addressing Boyd Tuesday.

“I can’t explain it, I’m just overjoyed,” Cristy said. “I’m just glad I can be home with him.”

Cristy says Monday night’s storms had James triggered, suffering from a flashback caused in part by a slamming door.

“Sometimes you just kind of want to give up, and then you get that little bit of extra that you need,” James said. “[...]Sometimes a little act of kindness just makes the world not seem so heavy.”

Boyd says many members of his family served in the Army. He says our veterans need to be taken care of.

“We appreciate it. We appreciate everything you’ve done for our country,” he said speaking to James.

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