Mission United Success Story: Ron Noel

“Barriers can hold you back but you have to choose to make a change in your life.”

05-05-2015 · Mission United


ron_noelRonald Noel is a believer that everything in life is a choice. Looking at Ron now, you wouldn’t know that his choices once lead him to become homeless.

Ron was born and raised in Lagrange, Kentucky. The youngest of four siblings, he describes his childhood as idyllic. Following high school, Ron attended the University of Kentucky and after graduating, joined the Air Force. He served for six years and was honorably discharged in 1984.

He went on to have a successful career in sales at many large telecommunication companies and eventually moved to Atlanta. He was doing so well, he retired at 42 thinking he was set.

After getting divorced in 2006, Ron began having issues with alcohol and drugs. He went through his savings and became broke. After getting in an altercation, he was charged with a felony. This made it very hard for him to find a job and he became homeless. “I went from six figures to six cents.” he said. It was while he was staying with his 30-year-old daughter that he decided to make a change. “I didn’t like her seeing me that way.”

He looked to the Salvation Army for help, there enrolled in a rehabilitation program. While he was there he learned about Mission United. The program helped him find housing and case management with Homes of Light Inc. “Being homeless was an awakening for me, sadly it took hitting that low to make me make a change,” he said.

Ron is now in his own apartment and just adopted a dog. He enjoys playing tennis and fishing. He is currently using his experiences with homelessness to help other veterans who are struggling. “Barriers can hold you back but you have to choose to make a change in your life.”