New Fisher House will give veteran families place to stay during care

Published: Monday, October 23, 2017 @ 4:19 PM

A rendering shows the Fisher House that will be built at the Dayton VA Medical Center. CONTRIBUTED
A rendering shows the Fisher House that will be built at the Dayton VA Medical Center. CONTRIBUTED

When a veteran has to stay at a VA hospital, families often have to make tough calls.

If the hospital is a far commute, they have to decide whether to pay for a hotel or motel near the hospital or be stuck far away when they want to support the veteran during treatment.

“I’ve had people who have gone by Wal-Mart to get a tent and a cot because they didn’t know where they were going to stay,” said David Coker, president of Fisher House Foundation, which provides free homes for veterans’ families who want to be close by during a hospital stay.

RELATED: VA leader backs house for families of injured vets

A new Fisher House will be added to the foundation’s network at the Dayton VA Medical Center to help families that now might have to make a hard decision.

The $6.5 million project broke ground today at the Dayton campus.

The privately-funded project will be supported by the foundation but also by a $1.075 million donation from local real estate developer Randy Gunlock and his wife Vicki and by a community fundraising effort that pulled together more than $650,000.

Cardinal Health, a Dublin-based pharmaceutical wholesaler, presented a check for an $812,000 donation to the Fisher House as part of the groundbreaking ceremony.

Coker said there will probably be about 500 families a year who stay at the new Fisher House in Dayton, which can house 16 families at a time.

The new Fisher House will be the third in the Dayton region, joining two others at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

RELATED: Two 19th century VA homes torn down for new Fisher House

Glenn Costie, CEO of the Dayton VA Medical Center, said Fisher House had support from residents and corporations in the community that rallied behind the initial donation from the Gunlocks, who spurred the project two years ago with their call offering to make the donation toward veterans through the Greener Pastures Foundation.

“Now I’m used to receiving phone calls for donations of maybe hundreds of dollars, thousands of dollars, and I’m prepared with projects we have for this purpose,” Costie said. “This donation was well over a million dollars and was presented with the Greener Pastures Foundation with the Gunlock family to help out veterans. So I knew quickly I had to come up with a new project.”

Previously, the VFW had run a hospitality house for decades on the campus, supporting visiting families of veterans who needed lodging help, but financially couldn’t keep the house running. The Fisher House will help fill that gap after it closed two years ago.

Fisher House has a national network of hospitality hospitals which show what the impact of the service can be. Coker said he met a Vietnam veteran in Houston said who told him he had been diagnosed with cancer and lived several hours from Houston.

RELATED: Funding goal of $500K set to build Fisher House 

Since his wife couldn’t afford to stay with him in Houston for eight weeks during his treatment, the veteran had initially decided he wanted to accept the time he had left because he wanted to spend time with his family. After he learned about the Fisher House though, he decided to get treatment and was now in remission.

“So having a Fisher House in many respects helps make the decisions easier on how you are going to address that health care. In this case, it was a success. I suspect one of the heavy users of this house will be oncology patients as well as families coming in for hospice,” he said. “And I can’t think of a more rewarding group of families to be able to serve.”

Pigs lost as a result of a barn fire in German Twp., crews say

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 1:24 AM
Updated: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 2:23 AM

UPDATE @ 2:52 a.m: 4-H pigs were the animals lost in a barn fire on in German Twp. Friday morning, according to officials.

TRENDING: Warren County sheriff’s deputies investigating fatal pedestrian strike

Crews responded to the 4800 block of Troy Road after midnight on reports of a fully involved barn fire.

RELATED: Crews dispatched on report of a house fire in Trotwood

The entire structure was lost as a result of the fire.

We’re working to learn what started the fire, as well as additional details. 

INITIAL REPORT

Crews are on scene of a barn fire that occurred in the 4800 block of Troy Road early Friday morning.

They were dispatched around 12:50 a.m., per initial reports.

We have a crew on the way to the scene and will update this story with additional details. 

Texas state trooper killed during traffic stop

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 2:11 AM

A Texas state trooper was killed during a traffic stop on Thanksgiving Day.
Texas Highway Patrol
A Texas state trooper was killed during a traffic stop on Thanksgiving Day.(Texas Highway Patrol)

A Texas state trooper was shot and killed during a traffic stop on Thursday, WFAA reported.

>> Read more trending news

Damon Allen, 41, was a 15-year veteran of the Texas Highway Patrol. He was shot and killed at about 4 p.m. on Interstate 45 just south of Fairfield, WFAA reported. 

The Texas Department of Public Safety said Allen had pulled over the suspect's vehicle for a traffic violation at about 3:45 p.m. After making contact with the driver, the trooper had returned to his patrol car when the suspect fired multiple shots from a rifle, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported. Allen died at the scene, WFAA reported. 

Allen was a husband and father of three, the Texas Highway Patrol said.

Authorities later arrested the driver of the vehicle, Dabrett Montreal Black, 32, of Lindale, the Star-Telegram reported.

The Waller County Sheriff's Officer posted on Facebook that one of its deputies had spotted Black driving in that county west of Houston and that shots had been fired afterward.

Just before 9 p.m., Black was found hiding in a field and taken into custody. He did have nonlife-threatening injuries and was taken to a hospital, KBTX reported. He was being treated for a K-9 bite, authorities said late Thursday.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement that “this trooper died selflessly serving Texas. Please join Angela and me as we pray for the trooper's family and for the entire Department of Public Safety.”

Gov. Greg Abbott reacted from his Twitter account. “Sad on Thanksgiving to lose one of our state troopers in the line of duty,”he wrote. “Prayers for his family. Swift justice for his killer.”

I just want to take a quick moment and recognize the Waller County Sheriff’s Office and Texas DPS troopers on...

Posted by Trey Duhon - Waller County Judge on Thursday, November 23, 2017

Troopers: Naked couple crashes car while having sex; baby was in back seat

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 1:25 AM

Washington State Patrol.
David Ryder/Getty Images
Washington State Patrol.(David Ryder/Getty Images)

A naked couple, having sex in their car while their baby was in the back seat, crashed while driving, the Washington State Patrol said.

>> Read more trending news

The man was driving on Highway 7 near La Grande in Pierce County, naked and having sex with a woman who also was naked, when he missed a curve, went off the road and struck a tree, State Patrol spokeswoman Brooke Bova said.

The crash occurred Wednesday at 6 p.m. troopers said.

Witnesses told troopers both the man and woman were naked when they got out of the car, The Everett Herald reported. Troopers said they were also both impaired.

The woman wasn't wearing a seat belt. She was taken to the hospital with several broken bones. The 3-month-old child in the back seat was not injured.

The man was arrested and booked into Pierce County Jail on suspicion of driving under the influence, vehicular assault and child endangerment, the Herald reported.

Troopers said the man has three prior DUI convictions.

Warren County sheriff’s deputies investigating fatal pedestrian strike

Published: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 12:41 AM
Updated: Friday, November 24, 2017 @ 1:29 AM

SCENE: Warren County hit-and-run

UPDATE @ 1:30 a.m: The fatal pedestrian strike that occurred in Centerville late Thursday night reportedly involved an 18-year-old male, according to officials.

The incident occurred on Yankee Road at Lytle-Five Points Road around 11 p.m.

Warren County Sheriff’s deputies continue to investigate the incident.

We’re working to learn the identity of the 18-year-old. 

INITIAL REPORT

Warren County sheriff's deputies have located a white pickup truck they believe was involved in a fatal pedestrian strike late Thanksgiving Night. 

We're hearing that the accident occurred in northern Warren County and a white Ford F150 was driven from the scene headed north on Yankee Street. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Male found dead in SUV sitting idle in the street

The pedestrian strike reportedly occurred sometime around 11 p.m. 

Deputies located the pickup truck just after 11:30 p.m. at a residence on Redsunset Drive, off Yankee Street in Centerville. 

We have a crew on scene, waiting to speak with one of the officers. 

We will update this developing report as we get information. 

Stay with whio.com for breaking news. 

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