The war hero who fought for his country, but the country is not fighting for him.
Brooklyn, New York — In December, several media outlets reported that a landlord is kicking out a 97-year-old Black veteran who served in WWII and survived Pearl Harbor, according to The Root.
In 2012, the New York Daily News reported that Rev. James Blakely was living in a run-down trailer until the organization Black Veterans and Social Justice (BVSJ) discovered his situation and decided to put in well-furnished Brooklyn apartment.
“This is home. It’s a place to live, sleep and cook. I just want my one-bedroom apartment. That’s not a lot to ask,” said Mr. Blakely.
From Mr. Blakely’s understanding, he thought that the apartment was rent-free. But BVSJ representatives claimed that Mr. Blakely signed a lease agreement to make monthly payments, costing him $778. Then his rent was reduced to $635.
“They’re trying to put me out. It’s injustice. I don’t know what’s going to happen. … I don’t feel good. I got no place else to go,” said Mr. Blakely in a New York Daily News interview.
Mr. Blakely cannot believe that he is losing his New York City borough apartment after it was gifted five years ago. Through the years, Mr. Blakely’s past due rent payment accumulated up to $24,130 in debt and he was sent numerous eviction notices, according to The Root.
Sadly enough, due to the gentrifying Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood which Mr. Blakely lives in, many Black neighborhoods are depleting in the top seller markets.
“I lay down at night and don’t know if I’ll have a place to lay down tomorrow night. It’s not a pleasant feeling,” said Blakely.
Hopefully, the Black community bands together and helps Mr. Blakely find a place to live. The war hero deserved the basic essentials since he put life on the line for his country.
Mr. Blakely received the Navy combat stars for fighting in the Philippines. So if you want to support Mr. Blakely please donate to his GoFundMe Account.
Here’s the link: Rev. James Blakely’s Housing Fund