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Disabled vet struggles to repair damage from Hurricane Harvey

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Posted at 6:01 PM, Jan 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-13 20:03:28-05

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — A local veteran has been struggling more than three years trying to rebuild his home following Hurricane Harvey.

David Ramos’ parents bought the house in the mid-1970's while he was in high school, just before he left for the U.S. Army. Now he’s struggling, trying to live in it himself.

“I need to do something, I can’t stay like I am,” said Ramos. “I need help with the house.”

Ramos served from 1976-79 in the famed 82nd Airborne Division. The physical toll of serving in the 82 is why Ramos said he has foot problems.

“We jumped all the time, everywhere, and we ran everyday,’ said Ramos. “I’ve had surgery twice on the same foot. Probably two more surgeries, and then they need to do the other foot.”

Ramos has been out of work as a pipe fitter because of the pandemic. He’s on 40 percent disability from the VA and unemployment, so after bills, Ramos isn’t left with much.

“Maybe $500-$600, I don’t know, something like that,’ said Ramos. “It’s not a whole lot.”

Meanwhile, his house, damaged by Hurricane Harvey in August 2017, needs thousands of dollars in repairs.

“It’s pretty much gutted, everything’s exposed,” said Ramos. “I’ve tried to go out there and get loans but I can’t get no help. I’ve tried and I’ve tried, I’ve looked around.”

The house was left to Ramos and his siblings a couple years before the hurricane, after his mother passed away.

“I couldn’t do anything about trying to get help to fix it because I didn’t own the house,” said Ramos. “Last year, I got the papers and everything under my name.”

Living in a travel trailer in his backyard, Ramos continues to rebuild.

“I have no hot water, I have running water to the trailer, but not the house,’ said Ramos. “I have electricity in the house.”

A slow process, with no end in sight.

“The way I’m going now, it’s going to take me forever to get it done,” said Ramos.

Ramos says another issue he’s had is with permits, adding that city permits add quite a bit to construction costs.

If you would like more information on how to help Ramos, visit https://www.kristv.com/veteransinfocus and submit a request.