By Emily Koehler
The possibility of a federal shutdown had one local business owner looking for solutions for the veterans who would have been affected. Jim Morris, owner of Morris Builders Incorporated, set aside a $1,000,000 budget for veterans to take out interest-free loans for up to $500 per week.
“I’m a Vietnam Vet and I know what it’s like to not have support,” Morris said. “I had no support while serving, even though I felt like what I did for our country was very honorable.”
“We came home to a very ungrateful nation, and I don’t want these young soldiers to feel like we don’t care about them,” he said.
Morris feels that the country needs to pay its respect to American troops in more than just dollar bills, however.
“I go out of my way to tell soldiers I appreciate them,” he said. “People don’t show that enough.”
Morris said soldiers are strengthened more than people know by simply hearing the words, “Thank you.”
“We wouldn’t have our country if it weren’t for them,” he said. “We would’ve lost it a long time ago.”
In addition to the loans he planned to offer being interest-free, Morris only expected to be paid back if the government reimbursed veterans for the borrowed money.
Morris pulled money from his limited resources and was asking other businesses, organizations, and individuals to join in because more money would have been necessary to support more soldiers for longer. He yearns for a national movement that will aid soldiers all over the country.
“First Bank of Conroe has been very supportive in doing everything they can to be legally involved.” Morris said.
Morris wants the public to remember not only the service men and women, but their spouses and children at home waiting for paychecks who would have been affected. With so many families depending on this money, he believed it was important for people to help in any way possible.
Fortunately, a government shutdown was averted at the last minute. Morris said the whole situation made him “sick” and he was “frustrated with the government and situation.”
“I feel like our leaders have let us down and we shouldn’t have gotten into this situation in the first place,” he said.