Organizers raise funds for veterans home in Mid-South - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

Organizers raise funds for veterans home in Mid-South

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Chris Schoenberger is a retired army captain who spent a year in Vietnam. Chris Schoenberger is a retired army captain who spent a year in Vietnam.
Seventy-five thousand veterans live in the tri-county area of West Tennessee. Seventy-five thousand veterans live in the tri-county area of West Tennessee.

(WMC-TV) - The Greater Memphis area is home to a number of military veterans, more than any other area in the state.

Although, there is not a state home for veterans to receive long term or rehabilitation care.

Chris Schoenberger is a retired army captain who spent a year in Vietnam. He has an instant bond with others who served in Vietnam, but with that service comes side effects he is still dealing with more than forty years later.

"The wounds of combat are entirely different from the wounds of civilian life," he said.

It is why he is part of West Tennessee Veterans Home Incorporated. It is a nonprofit group with one goal: build two veterans homes for those who live in the tri-county area of West Tennessee. That area includes Fayette, Tipton, and Shelby counties.

"The staff at Veterans Homes is especially trained to deal with the effects of PTSD with the effects of service related injuries," said board chair is Holly Swogger.

The closest Veterans Home to the Memphis area is in Humboldt, Tenn., which is roughly 100 miles away.

There are three parcels of land 25 acres each that could be sites for two homes in the Memphis area. Two of the sites are in Millington off of Highway 51 and another is in Memphis in the area of James Road and McLean Boulevard.

"To have a place where our veterans can go where they can feel comfortable, where they are with other veterans ... It's a proven fact they recover better and faster," said Swogger.

Seventy-five thousand veterans live in the tri-county area of West Tennessee.

"They shouldn't have to grovel stand in line or sit in line whatever the situation may be," said Schoenberger.

West Tennessee Veterans Home hopes to have a facility like the one in Pells City, Ala. It is a $60 million dollar home.

Organizers are trying to raise about $20 million in the next 18 months. If you would like to help and donate, click here.

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