Army Vet Receives Honors as an Attorney

Homeless Army Veteran Now is an Attorney

Attorney Mark Nicholson standing outside his law office.

‘The first two years of law school, I was homeless’ | Army veteran rises to Elite Lawyer honors

Mark Nicholson served his country in the United States Army, then served time in prison. After being released from prison, he was homeless but now is an attorney in Indianapolis.
Sarah Jones for WTHR

At the age of 32, Nicholson enrolled in law school. He said his age gave him a different perspective.

“Some of the younger students may have thought this was the most challenging thing they had ever faced,” said Nicholson. “I had already been through a lot of challenges.”

As an Army and National Guard veteran, one of those challenges occurred during Nicholson’s three years in the military.

“Being in Panama, not knowing if you were going to get shot or killed,” said Nicholson.

He said that less than a year after coming home, he “was charged in 1991 with murder and convicted of voluntary manslaughter.”

“Prison was not a welcoming environment. People were being killed, there were drugs,” said Nicholson.

He said he served 12 years behind bars.

“Being gone for so long and then being released, with I think, at the time they gave you $70, that’s all I had,” said Nicholson.

With just $70, Nicholson was homeless, “living under a bridge outdoors, off of Meridian.”

But he wasn’t giving up.

“When you’re at the bottom, they say the only (other) way is up. So I knew at some point, my life was going to improve as long as I keep working at it,” said Nicholson.

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