Veteran Spotlight: Frank McDonald

February 9, 2022

Frank McDonald, 63, saw the U.S. Army as his chance to get out of his small town and achieve the goals he had for life. Born and raised in the rural outskirts of Fresno, CA, McDonald grew up in a single-parent home with his mother. Growing up, McDonald faced many hardships and learned to depend on himself while his mother did her best to raise him. At 18 years old, he enlisted in the Army and served as a Telecommunications Operator from 1976 to 1979.  

After completing his military service, McDonald moved around from state to state before settling in the Bay Area in the 80’s. He first came to Swords to Plowshares around 10 years ago, seeking housing assistance. Remembering the help he received then, McDonald connected with us in 2021 as he found himself at risk of homelessness. He was unemployed and relying on social security income to get by. McDonald was motivated to get back into full-time employment.

As he began exploring his career options, he found interest in truck driving and was able to enroll in a training course to obtain his Class A license. Today, McDonald is employed with Western Express, Inc. as a Class A ​truck ​driver. He is quickly getting adjusted to the cross-country drives, ​and feels happy to earn a sufficient income again.

He thanks his employment specialist, Dante McCormick, for helping him find ​this opportunity. Over the next year, he wishes to establish a foundation for a good life to prosper. “I’m happy with my life. I’m still alive. I did something right!” he shares. In the next five years, his goal is to own a home, take care of his family, and watch his grandchildren grow up.