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This fundraiser ended on 11/30/12

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The family and friends of Eric Smith are working to get him on track and in touch with a new life.

Hello all. I am an army veteran. I served 3 years active duty in Fort Louisiana. This story is not as painful as other's such as breast cancer and I have lost a dear friend due to it and I also have a friend who is a survivor from it as well so, all I will need to get me on the track that I need is 40 thousand and the other 20 thousand will go to a cancer foundation and I will make sure that I have proper documentation.

My story begins. I served 3 years in Fort Polk Louisiana, active duty from 1999-2002. I ets'd with an honorable discharge. My first civilian job was a correctional officer for the state of Louisiana. I worked there for almost 2 years and I got a job offer to work in Kuwait as a private contractor.

People think private contractor=big money. I made $13.45 an hour to risk my life doing outside patrols, searching for IED's, checkpoints, recon as a Force Protection Officer in formally know as camp Doha, Kuwait. I also repaired weapons, issued new ones if needed to soldiers, marines, airmen and seamen of the United States as well as other coalition forces.

You might raise your brow as to why I haven't gone to some other contractor as Blackwater or any other big profit contract making roughly over 200k a year. I choose that mission because for one, I came from a small town in Ohio, I'm used to not making so much money and having to turn to another contract once it all fades away. And also, I was in the military, I wanted to support the men and women who really thrived for what they believed in. And I love to travel and explore. I love learning new cultures. I made sure I wasn't strickened with such a work load and overtime that most people went there for. I didn't seclude myself into a room. I went out and enjoyed everything.

Which brings me to the main reason why I'm starting a fund raiser. Being that I love to explore, I went to China on my own. I wanted to see all forbidden cities and my first stop was Changchun where I happened to meet a very beautiful and smart Chinese lady at a coffee shop. She was speaking perfect English which caught my attention. I came to her and asked where she was from and she said here in Changchun. We had a good night, ate dinner. She showed me her neighborhood and I saw her apartment and it was terrible. As bad as the worst ghetto I've seen but Chinese style. I felt bad for her. I told her that I live in Kuwait at the moment as a contractor and she can come and move with me and we can go from there. I have met her parents, her family.

8 months later we got married. She moved to Kuwait with me and stayed there with me for 2 years. The whole 2 years she didn't work. I told her that I'm not some big hotshot contractor that makes all kinds of money and that I'm doing this only as an experience. She supposedly understood. But yet she wanted D&G, Mango, Zara, all designer clothing and I supported it because I saw where she came from.

I had reached the end of my 3rd contract and it's time to go back to the states. A place of my home and a place she had never been to before. I told her its time to get your green card, visa to go back to the states. It was a long and grueling process. When I asked her where does she want to live she said New York. Seriously, it was stressful in Kuwait and I knew in New York I would never find peace so I asked her is there any other place? She said New York or I will divorce you and move back to China and find another man who will treat me better.

I'm easy going. I think of where she came from. Keep in mind, I'm from a small town in Ohio and I can relate so, we ended up in NY, in a small 1 bdrm apartment. Basically a studio apartment- kitchen and livingroom in the same area, a bathroom and a small bedroom.

We lived comfortably in that condition for roughly a year and then she told me her mom and dad were coming from China with a week notice. I told her great! I would love for them to visit America! Guess what. That wasn't an invitation for them to visit, that was an invitation for them to live with us for 8 months for them to get their visas. I put up with coming home cold and tired from work to see her dad on my couch watching my tv to them constantly cooking. It came to the point where I would sit on the roof of the apartment building just so I can have my peace.

After the 8 months, they vanished, got some illegal under the table jobs and did their thing and my wife and I moved to a better apartment in a better area. Keep in mind, her parents made many random visits. My parents which is 1, my mom, has never seen NY.

I tried to ask my wife if we could move to any other place, NY is bringing me down, it's too busy for me, she refused. I have a great resume. I can manage a great life other than NYC, the place that I was forced into being.

She then starts talking about buying property, a house in fact and I told her no. I do not want to live in NY as it is. I have no family or friends here. She then threw in house or divorce. Ok, I suppose you can see I'm gullible but have a good heart at this time.

She told me not to worry, her parents (who works illegally in the US) will take care of the downpayment, take care of everything and she wants me to sign because I'm a veteran and I get the VA loan.

So, I signed for the house. She's the consigned. I lived there for 2 years. Did what I could and then she talks about buying another house which brings me to this.

The alternatives with her. Do this her way or divorce. It was enough for me. I signed the whole house off to her. I didn't put any money into it, her parents did. The agreement was I sign off full responsibility to her and I did and I have full proof in writing and she gives me 5k for a whole new life.

Think about it. What is 5k to a person forced into NY? I have a truck to pay for, I'm rebuilding myself in an environment that I didn't even want. I'm a guy who likes things simple, go to work, come home.

If you have read my story, thank you and if you can donate it would be very appreciated. I do have a long list of references on my resume that can assure you of who I am and what I'm enduring.
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