DAR members visit Fisher House
Posted: Thursday, May 27, 2010 8:01 pm
The Fisher House program is a unique private-public partnership that supports America’s military and veterans’ families in their time of need. Because members of the military and their families are stationed worldwide and must often travel great distances for specialized medical care, Fisher House Foundation builds and donates “comfort homes” on the grounds of major military and Veterans Administration medical centers. These homes enable family members to be close to a loved one at the most stressful times — during hospitalization for an unexpected illness, disease or injury.
There is at least one Fisher House at every major military medical center to assist families in need and to ensure they are provided with the comforts of home in a supportive environment.
The immaculately maintained Fisher House at Fort Campbell has the appearance and environment of a top-rated hotel. Annually, the Fisher House program serves about 10,000 families and has made available nearly three million days of lodging to family members since the program originated in 1990. The average length of stay for a family at a Fisher House is 12 days. There is no charge for any family to stay at a Fisher House.
The Fisher House Foundation uses donations to reimburse the individual Fisher Houses operated by the Army, Navy and Air Force.
In 1990, Zachary Fisher and his wife, Elizabeth, began the Fisher House program, building 24 of the now existing 38 Fisher Houses for the military and VA by the time he died in 1999. Zachary Fisher was a Russian immigrant who came to America and accumulated great wealth in construction. He was unable to serve in World War II due to an injury. Elizabeth Fisher was an entertainer with the USO during World War II. They wanted to show their feelings of appreciation for America and the courageous and dedicated men and women who protect and defend it, enabling the rest of us to enjoy the freedom that we too often take for granted. Through the generosity and patriotism of so many, the Fishers’ mission of giving back to their country by honoring the sacrifices made on our behalf by those who wear or have worn the uniform of the USA is sustained today as the foundation which continues to grow and flourish.
The Fisher House Foundation and individual Fisher Houses depend on public donations to continue their important work. Supporting those who have braved the war on terrorism is everyone’s responsibility. According to printed information pertaining to the program, when it comes to the military, charity is not a word in the language of those who are associated with the Fisher House Foundation. They believe this is not charity, but duty. The Reelfoot Chapter DAR will continue to support this worthwhile project, a spokesman said.
Published in The Messenger 5.27.10