Bill Shephard has pulled his medal off eBay and ended the auction Thursday morning. He'll still be selling to the highest bidder for $5,025 and says he doesn't need any more money beyond that.
He's going to spend the money on overdue utility bills, insurance for his landscaping business, and for flyers to market his business. He's already received a lawnmower and a trailer. Any money he has left over he says he'll donate to a Philly organization for homeless vets.
An Army Veteran returning home from war faces his toughest challenge yet. He's trying to land a job. Until he is able to find a job, Bill Shephard will sell his metals he earned during military service to help support his family. Shephard received a certificate for a job well done. He won several awards while serving for a year in Iraq. When he returned home in 2009, he thought that would help him land a job. "I was very wrong and I'm still unemployed, and have three beautiful young children that are counting on me for support," he said.
He put an ad up on EBAY on Monday to sell his medal. "Instead of going under a bridge with a sign, will work for food, I decided to place the award online for a bid," Shephard said. "I just did it pretty much out of frustration and desperation."
His 99 weeks of unemployment benefits ran out in October, 2011. He has done everything right. He went back to school. He also applied for jobs everywhere. And, he sought help from Veterans organizations but nothing has helped. "I'm used to supporting the family and being you know, the one that earns the income," he said.
Neighbors are helping out, hiring him for odd jobs like painting fences and building a garden wall. Shephard also cuts lawns with an old push mower. He said it's not enough. Shephard is hoping to use the money he gets from the e-bay sale to buy a new lawn mower and a trailer, so he can expand his landscaping business.