CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — After six years of being homeless, Navy veteran Daniel Hinojosa hit rock bottom after having difficulty finding employment, and losing his home.
Psychological conditions, including anxiety and PTSD that stemmed from Hinojosa's time in the military, sent him into a downward spiral.
Hinojosa says he slept on benches, on concrete floors — anywhere he could in order to survive. He found it impossible to remain hopeful after being denied his veterans disability payments.
Hinojosa's doctor, who treated him for anxiety at the time, finally stepped in to help and connected him with a caseworker from Veteran Affairs.
"I got a phone call, and a caseworker said 'Where are you?' " Hinojosa said. "Mr. Revilla then sent an Uber to pick me up from the park bench I was at and took me to a hotel specifically for homeless veterans."
Endeavors is an organization with branches all around Texas. The group offers a variety of services for vulnerable people, including help for migrants and also veterans. Hinojosa said Hector Revilla was a great help, pointing him in the right direction, and helping him get off the streets.
During Hinojosa's time at the hotel, he renewed his veteran's identification card and was able to receive a stimulus check.
He said he stayed at the hotel for about six months with other local veterans until he moved into an apartment of his own.
"My caseworker helped me get an apartment," Hinojosa said. "He even helped me furnish my home. And they provided me with a lot of groceries."
On April 1, Hinojosa will celebrate one year of living in his own apartment with his dog, Dulce.
Hinojosa finally was approved for disability payments as a service-connected veteran after being diagnosed with tinnitus. He said persistence paid off for him, and he encourages others to do the same.
"Don't give up! Continue to file your claim," he said. "I'm living proof of this. It took me 15 years to get where I'm at now. Don't lose hope."
Nearly three years since Veterans Affairs intervened to help Hinojosa; he wants to do the same for other local veterans.
"Now, with my skillset, I can save veterans a lot of time on how to get assistance," he said. "Any knowledge that has come my way, I try to pay it forward. I'm a huge believer in paying it forward."
Currently, Hinojosa is working on starting a support group for veterans that need assistance with applying for veteran-disability compensation, and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
Here are services and resources connected to the VA available to veterans in need locally:
The United States Department of Veteran Affairs (V.A.) administers Veteran Services for local veterans at a federal level.
The Corpus Christi Veteran Service Organization helps veterans at federal, state, and local levels. The services available include assistance with veteran benefits, access to insurance, medical care, and education benefits.
Services Provided to Nueces County Veterans:
- Service-connected disability compensation
- Non-service connected disability pension
- Debt Waivers
- Claims for survivor's benefits, including
- Request for military discharge documents (DD 214)
- Correction of military records
- Request for medals and decorations
- Information and referrals for:
*Death (Widow's) Pension
*VA grave markers
*V.A. educational benefits
*V.A. health care
*Texas Veterans Land Board Programs
*VA home loans
There are also several clinics throughout Corpus Christi for local veterans focusing on health care and mental health services.
Corpus Christi VA Clinic
5283 Old Brownsville Road
Corpus Christi, TX 78405-3908
Main phone: 361-806-5600
The Corpus Christi VA outpatient clinic provides primary health care, mental health care, rehabilitation, prosthetics, physical and occupational therapy, and nutrition counseling. Women's health services and an organ transplant program are also provided.
South Enterprize VA Clinic
205 South Enterprize Parkway
Corpus Christi, TX 78405-4118
Main phone: 361-939-6510
The South Enterprize VA outpatient clinic offers primary health care and specialty health services, including cardiology, mental health care, orthopedics, physical and occupational therapy, and foot care.
Corpus Christi Vet Center Services:
4646 Corona Drive, Suite 250
Corpus Christi, TX 78411
Main number: 361-854-9961
- Individual and group counseling for Veterans, service members, and their families
- Family counseling for military-related issues
- Bereavement (grief) counseling
- Military sexual trauma counseling and referral
- Community outreach and education
- Substance abuse assessment and referral
- Employment referral
- Referral of other V.A. services