This morning AMVETS National Commander Jerry Hotop and AMVETS National Programs Director Beryl Love made their way to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. to visit with wounded warriors recovering at the facility.
Hotop, whose schedule routinely takes him out of the Washington area, wanted to take a few moments to meet with troops recuperating at the facility.
During the visit, Hotop was able to meet with troops in various stages of the recovery process from all across the country and offered words of gratitude and encouragement on behalf of the 250,000 AMVETS, AMVETS Ladies Auxiliary, and Sons of AMVETS nationwide.
Hotop also received a briefing from hospital brass on the forthcoming merger between Walter Reed Army Medical Center and the nearby National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Md., to form the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
The two facilities are slated to merge between September and October, when the current Walter Reed facility is scheduled to close permanently. The majority of patients transferred to the new facility in Bethesda will be amputees and those suffering from severe traumatic brain injuries and post-traumatic stress disorder. Remaining patients will be transferred to the new state-of-the-art Army hospital at Fort Belvoir, Va.
While at Walter Reed, Hotop also had the opportunity to visit with three of the Federal Recovery Coordinators who have been assisting service members and their families in requests for financial assistance through the AMVETS Healing Heroes program. To date, AMVETS Healing Heroes has given more than $500,000 in grants to 256 requesting families, with more aid still available.
(Story with contributions from Beryl Love.)