New Nursing Home For Veterans

By: Whitney Daniel
By: Whitney Daniel

With the largest population of the state's veterans living in East Tennessee, government leaders and local veterans agree Knox County is the ideal location for the new facility.

Volunteer TV's Whitney Daniel talks with some of those veterans who will utilize the new home when it opens up in December.

"I'm 100-percent disabled," former POW Bill Tallent said.

Bill Tallent is a former P-O-W who will take advantage of the services this new veteran's home provides.

"I got shot in the back, both hips, right leg... that's not a normal thing," Tallent said.

That's why veteran's need special care.

"I do think they understand you better," Tallent said.

"Their bodies have been through different things, and their minds have been through different things," VFW 2nd district commander Harry Carroll said.

Private nursing homes house several veterans, but this home is especially built for veterans.

"We have 150,000 veterans within a 50-mile radius, so this is real urgent that we have a health care system like this here," veteran Michael Scott Golden said.

Building this facility in Knox County has been a long time coming.

"I've spent a lot of time in Johnson City," Tallent said.

Right now, veterans can only receive specialized care at three other facilities, none are very close to Knoxville, but come December, that will change.

"This is what we need in East Tennessee, the Veteran's Hospitals in Nashville, Murfreesboro and Johnson City is 100-plus miles from here. This way, family members can come visit their relatives and to me, that's the greatest therapy in the world is your family," Carroll said.

And with family nearby, this is a place veterans can truly call "home."

"This is the place where they can come get comradeship, get treatment, this is where they can come get taken care of, the last hurrah for a lot of them," Carroll said.

The veteran's home is valued at 18-million dollars -- 65-percent of that is federally funded, 35-percent comes from state and local dollars.


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