East Providence resident Luis Vertentes learned on August 2 that he was to be evicted from his apartment after falling behind on rent.
On the day of his eviction notice, Vertentes had connected with Crossroads' Housing Stabilization Case Manager Katie Barrington at the courthouse, who helped him begin connecting with the Coordinated Entry System to find shelter.
Vertentes felt powerless: "I’m going to be homeless, all because of this pandemic. I feel helpless, like I can’t do anything even though I work and I got a full-time job.”
On August 3 he received help from an unexpected source.
During his hearing, Vertentes donned his Gas Monkey Garage (GMG) shirt, a motorcycle and auto shop in Texas that has been featured on Discovery Channel's Fast N Loud. It was because he decided to wear that shirt that he caught the attention of Richard Ray Rawlings, owner of GMG and star of Fast N Loud and Garage Rehab.
Vertentes' interview with AP on evictions had gone viral, and caught Rawlings attention as he proudly repped Rawlings' garage. Rawlings put the call out to his hundreds of thousands of followers that Vertentes needed help.
Hours after Vertentes' heartbreaking interview, Rawlings had connected with Vertentes and his landlord, paid back Vertentes' back rent, provided rent payments for Vertentes until January 2022 and donated money to both Vertentes and his landlord to help them get back on their feet.
Vertentes frequently checks in with Crossroads staff and knows he always has us to fall back on if he ever needs support in maintaining his housing. We wish him all the best!