Returning citizen get 2nd chance after 37 years with organization's help

A local family's foundation continues its mission of helping returning citizens from prison with everything they need for a fresh start.

"That's one good shot of me and Tommy Hearns," said Jimmy Cole, showing off a photo of himself boxing the future champ in the 1975 Detroit Golden Gloves championship finals.

Back then, he was Jimmy 'No limit' Cole in the ring with then-Tommy 'Hurricane' Hearns.

It was Class A boxing," he said.

But Jimmy 'No limit' Cole  had that nickname for a reason.

"I couldn't stay out of trouble," he said. "You know I was I was a hard-headed, bad kid back in the day."

It would land him in prison for 37 years.  Now, James Cole is 65, a returning citizen with a second chance.

"It took 37 years to rehabilitate me," Cole said.

He has his freedom and his own apartment, and it's completely furnished.

"The best thing I can ever have is a very big bed," he said, smiling. "I lay right here in the center, and just stretch out."

From the bed to the dinette set, dishes and silverware and more, James now has, as he starts again.

"Everything you see in here comes from Bob," he said. "I appreciate him. He's a blessing."

His name is Bob Schwartz and his Here to Help Foundation is dedicated to returning hope to returning citizens.

"They need a tremendous amount of help because they're literally coming with nothing," Bob said.

Bob and his wife started Here to Help in 2007 and over the years they've addressed different needs and have helped 20,000 people.

But in 2020 during the pandemic, they turned their attention to returning citizens and have helped close to 5,000 people with gift cards, clothing, furniture, transportation, and so much more.

"If you want them to be successful as we should as a community, as a society, they need help," Schwartz said.

From housing to employment, there are so many resources returning citizens don't have access to, but fortunately, Bob Schwartz and his organization are here to help.

"We get the furniture from Bob, it really helped me out, it helped change my life around," Cole said. "You know, when you get the resources like that, and the help that you can get through the system. It helps you be a better man."

Now for Jimmy 'No Limit' the sky's the limit, thanks to a second chance and people who care.

"The second time around is always better than the first time," he said. " You know, my second time is going to be a great time. And my last time ever going back to prison."

To donate or partner with Here to Help, go to this LINK