Grant-A-Smile Program Gave These Vets Life-Changing Procedures (VIDEO)

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Though Melvin Bridgmon just can’t hide his smile these days, the 61-year-old Chicagoan wasn’t always grinning.

The Vietnam-era veteran told WGN his life after military service was a struggle. He was homeless for 10 years, and in 1999 lost nearly all of his teeth when he was beaten up by a group of men who wrongfully accused him of theft.

Thanks to the Grant-A-Smile partnership between the Chicago-based Manus Dental Group and the Veterans Upward Bound pre-college entry program at Roosevelt University, veterans like Bridgmon are having their smiles — and their confidence — restored.

The program, which began in 2013, is currently providing seven veterans with free dental procedures that would otherwise cost a small fortune.

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