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Hotels for Heroes Program Would Provide Lodging for Families of Injured Military

By Rhonda Miller | Published 09 Nov 2011 08:35pm | comments
Derek Donovan is vice president of Fisher House Foundation, which provides housing for families visiting injured military personnel.

Legislation introduced into Congress would allow people to donate hotel points to families of injured military men and women. MPB’s Rhonda Miller has more on the program and where it’s needed in Mississippi.

The bill is called Hotels for Heroes and it’s co-sponsored by Mississippi Senator Roger Wicker.

"This is a complement to the very successful Hero Miles program, where individuals donate airline miles for military families to visit injured loved ones," says Wicker. "This would allow people to donate hotel rooms."

If it passes, the bill would help provide lodging for families visiting loved ones at veterans and military hospitals across the country, including Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi. The base has what’s called a “comfort home”  built by the Fisher House Foundation. The group’s vice president, Derek Donovan, says the house is booked through January.

"And especially now, we have so many wounded warriors and their families that are using them, they’re very, very full, so there’s limited capacity, and so a lot of families are still trying to find lodging out in town," Donovan said.

Families visiting patients at the veterans hospital in Biloxi also need housing. Donovan says the Hotels for Heroes program would apply in any area where military personnel are receiving treatment.

"The military and the VA offer the best health care in the world, but sometimes health care is not the only medicine you need. Sometime you need family nearby to help you recover, " says Donovan.

The program is also expected to benefit hotels, not only by filling rooms during the tight economy, but also by the goodwill that comes with helping wounded veterans.

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Derek Donovan is vice president of Fisher House Foundation, which provides housing for families visiting injured military personnel.


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