Twenty years ago, retired colonel Misti Isley DeCaire dreamed of opening a shelter for veterans and anyone else that needed a warm meal and place to rest.
With Veterans Helping Veterans Ponderosa Manor, at 212 W. Wade Lane, she accomplished that goal, helping more than 6,000 veterans.
Without any federal funding, DeCaire has relied strictly on donations to keep the shelter open.
Many of those donations come in the form of goods; so many, that the once nursing home is swamped with furniture and households products.
Two months ago, DeCaire opened Misti’s Solutions, a thrift store just off the Beeline Highway, south of Vita Mart, to sell some of those goods.
Any profit is put back into Ponderosa Manor and helping veterans.
DeCaire founded Veterans Helping Veterans to advocate for veterans in the Rim Country, taking in jobless, homeless veterans, some struggling with addiction and other issues.
DeCaire is still getting the small shop organized and when the Roundup visited Friday, volunteers were moving furniture and a piano around to make room for more products.
Nearly everything in the store has been donated.
The shop is packed with clothing, household goods, curios, art, toys and jewelry.
DeCaire said the shop’s prices are lower than that of other thrift stores in town and every weekend, the shop will hold a bag sale.
For $2 or $3, customers can take as much clothing as they can fit into a bag.
DeCaire expects local artists to finish work on a mural on the side of the building soon.
The mural features patriotic themes to honor local veterans.
Misti’s Solutions is open Monday through Sunday, closed Tuesday and for lunch daily.
For more information, call (928) 474-3920.
Anyone interested in donating to the store is asked to drop donations off at Ponderosa Manor and not the store due to space.