Walter Reed National Military Medical Center & Fisher Houses
A Limo and Lunch event was held by FUMC for 9 Wounded Veterans and their caregivers and families. A 10th Wounded Veteran, Captain Smith, was unable to make it due to a medical appointment. Our Limo Driver, Arthur, and Ed McMeans, the FUMC Escort, were the hosts for the Lunch held at Tony and Joe’s Seafood Restaurant on the Potomac River in Georgetown MD.
- Front, left: SFC Tonia M. Chestnut has been a member of the Army Reserves since 2000, has over 13 years of Active Duty and has served in Afghanistan. Since 2014 she has been in the WTU Program at WRNMMC for treatment related to active duty injuries.
- Front, 2nd from left: LTC Sheila White and her fiancé Homer Williams. LTC White, Army National Guard, served during Desert Storm II and Iraq. Her fiancé Homer is a U.S. Army Korean War Veteran. He is also a Mediator, Personal Life Coach and a Retired Treasury Department Special Agent.
- Front far right: Dustin Tuller, SSG U.S. Army, with his family, wife Cheryl and daughters Katherine and Haleigh. Dustin lost both legs while serving in Iraq due to multiple gunshots. He was retired on disability. For many years he did motivational speaking for the Army. He is currently recovering from Open Heart Surgery at the WRNMMC Bethesda Fisher Houses. Their home is near Pensacola FL where they live on 40 acres. An owner of Tony and Joes’ Seafood Restaurant, Greg Casteen, talked with them about peanut farming. Dustin and his daughter Katherine were able to answer all the questions that Greg threw at them about peanut farming!
- Back, left: SFC Davis, U.S. Army, two tours in Iraq and one tour in Kuwait. Married to a beautiful wife and have 4 sweet daughters and a handsome son. Twenty-four years in the Army and anxiously awaiting decision on retirement.
- Back, center: SFC Henry McFarlin, U.S. Army, two tours in Iraq. Currently awaiting decisions regarding US Army medical retirement.
We had a great time. Food was superb, fellowship was even better, and the sea stories were, well, “sea stories”! We thank them all for their service to their country and their loved ones.
NOTE: After lunch, some of our guests took a walk on the Potomac Boardwalk and enjoyed the views and chatting with each other.
Veterans Administration, Fisher House & Medical Center in Washington, DC.
A Limo Lunch event was held for 5 caregivers from Fisher House. All but one were first time Limo Lunchers. There were 2 last minute cancellations as a result of medical changes for their veterans. Our Limo Driver, Guy, and Allen, the FUMC Escort, were the hosts for the Lunch held at the Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, MD.
- Lois Noble Justice is caregiver for her veteran husband William undergoing spinal cord injury rehabilitation. William was an Air Force Chef. Both reside in Abell, MD. Lois had her digital camera run low on AA batteries. Our driver Guy found a store and bought batteries for Lois.
- Lois McCann is caregiver wife of Vietnam Era Army Veteran Thomas McCann who is having colon surgery at the VA Medical Center. Both reside in Pasadena, MD. Thomas worked with Hawk Missiles in Vietnam from 1966-1969.
- Rose Krueger, daughter of Leo Taconi, is giving him care him for complications from a fall. Leo was a Yeoman in the Navy during the Korean and Vietnam wars. Rose is from Bay St Louis, MS.
- Stephanie Callahan, is giving care for her husband Raymond undergoing Open Heart Surgery. Until this day she thought her husband had been in the Marine Supply Corp. When asked for details of his supply job she called her husband in the hospital and learned that he was a Marine Combat Engineer who faced risks inherent with his combat military responsibilities. In defense of and in credit to Shephanie, she and her husband were married after his Marine Career was complete. They reside in Baltimore, MD.
- Barbara Strickland is caring for her husband Michael while he is undergoing 3 sessions of kidney dialysis over four days. Michael is a candidate for a replacement kidney. He was an Army Tele- communications Tech Vietnam in 1976. They both are from Goldsboro, NC.
We had a great time on a cold but sunny day. Several took doggie bag deserts and Red Lobster Biscuits for their veterans who were unable to attend. The caregiver families are military families through and through and all appreciated those who, through private donations and selfless efforts, say Thank You to those who have served and are serving today as well as to their families and caregivers who serve with equal measure of dedication, devotion, patriotism and sacrifice.
Veterans Administration, Fisher House & Medical Center in Washington, DC.
A Limo Lunch event was held for 3 caregivers from Fisher House. All 3 were first time Limo Lunchers. There were 2 last minute cancellations as a result of medical changes for their veterans. Our Irish Limo Driver Hugh and Allen the FUMC Escort were the hosts for the Lunch held at the Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, Maryland.
- Ola Bradley and Debra Sanders, Grandmother and Mother respectively of Granddaughter/ Daughter Kisha, a 40 year old disabled Navy veteran here for surgery. She suffered wounds from enemy fire on the helicopter she was in while airborne over Iraq. Kisha, who now resides in Maryland, was 1 of only 3 women in Iraq at the time. She was a paralegal for the legal team conducting the trial of Saddam Hussein. Kisha’s mom Debra is an Air Force Veteran (1979-1986) serving as a Personelman and is the widow of Air Force veteran husband Gregory. Debra’s sister is a retired Navy Chaplin. Debra Lives in Wasilla, Alaska. Ola, a retired LPN, is eighty years old but looks like she is fifty. She hails from Richmond, Virginia.
- Kim Young Nam, born in South Korea, now resides in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania. She is here for her Husband, a 12 year Army veteran undergoing kidney surgery. They have a son currently in the Air Force.
Though a small group, we had a great time on a weather perfect day. The caregiver families are military families through and through and all appreciated those Americans who, through private donations and selfless efforts, say Thank You to those who have served and are serving today as well as to their families and caregivers who serve with equal measure of dedication, devotion, patriotism and sacrifice.
Limo-to-Lunch Event for Veterans Administration, Fisher House
and Medical Center in Washington, DC.
A Limo Lunch event was held for 8 caregivers from Fisher House and 1 Fisher House Volunteer Bertha Bryant, total 9. All were first time Limo Lunchers. Our Irish Limo Driver Hugh and Allen Kriskowski the FUMC escort, brought the total to 11. They hosted the Lunch held at the Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, Maryland.
This was the largest Limo and Lunch group we’ve had from the VA the Fisher House. We had a great time on a weather perfect day and it was a joyous pre-Christmas gathering.
- Kitty Richardson, wife of a Vietnam Veteran under-going heart bypass surgery, and their daughter Tammy are at Fisher House for his support. Tammy came from Key West, Florida and she had to borrow winter clothes to make the trip.
- Julie Fifield from Bloomery & Paw Paw, West Virginia is at the Fisher House with her daughter Sarah giving care to her Vietnam Era Army Veteran husband Rodney who is having surgery to remove a nodule from his left lung.
- Sarah Smith is staying at Fisher House while her Military Veteran father recovers from surgery. She resides in West Virginia. She is studying Alternative Health & Nutrition at college and is also working on a home business.
- Jessica Williams is at the Fisher House supporting her husband Michael a 4 year Marine Corp Veteran who is undergoing tests to diagnose an illness.
- Marcia Hayes Jackson from Bear, Delaware is giving care to her US Army Veteran husband Elvin undergoing surgeries to allow him to walk with a normal gait.
- Edna Alers, born in Puerto Rico but now making Clarksburg, Maryland her home, is giving care to her Military Veteran husband who is undergoing treatment for cancer.
- Connie Martin is providing care her US Navy Veteran husband Lorin while he is undergoing heart surgery. Lorin has 2 brothers who served in the US Air Force. Their Mom and Dad both served in the US Army during WWII. That is quite the patriotic military family!
One of our fun interactions was improvising of loony lyrics that could be used in the ‘Twelve Days of Christmas’ carol. Verses such as; 12 Men a Belchin; 11 Wives a Naggin; 5 Nose Rings; and 1 Honey Do List in a Christmas Tree.
The caregiving families are military families through and through and all expressed appreciation to those who through private donations and selfless efforts help those who have served and are serving today. They also appreciate families and caregivers who serve with equal measure of dedication, devotion, patriotism and sacrifice.
We had 7 Limo Riders including Hugh our Limo Driver and FUMC escort Ed McMeans. We lunched at The Red Lobster Restaurant in Silver Spring, Maryland. We had 5 Fisher House guests, a 6th had a last minute Drs. Appointment.
Those who attended the lunch were:
Carlos and Edna Alers. Carlos was a member of the US Coast Guard. He was at the VA Med Center undergoing throat cancer care. His wife Edna is his caregiver. They lived and served in Puerto Rico for most of their lives but have moved to Maryland to be near the VA Hospital and their children and grandchildren. They have been married 44 years but act like newlyweds!
Michael and Barbara Strickland. Michael has tested the capabilities of the Military Medical system for many years with multiple major medical issues. Currently he is undergoing dialysis. Nonetheless, he maintains a great disposition, smile and attitude. He’s retired Army and is a relatively newlywed having been married for 5 years but believe they have known each other for over 25 years!
Queen Bess Baker. While she lives in GA, she is staying at the DC Fisher House while her Son underwent brain surgery at the VA Hospital. He is in intensive care while going through treatment and recovery. Both her husband and son served in the US military. She and her husband have been married 49 years.
Everyone had a great time, had some laughs and appreciated a respite from the daily responsibilities of being at the VA Med Center. Nearing the end of our luncheon, we enjoyed a wonderful conversation about the families of Wounded Warriors and what tremendous responsibilities they shoulder when their spouses are deployed. We prayed for our WW Families before departing the restaurant.
Walter Reed National Military Center Hospital and Fisher Houses
On Tuesday, November 15, 2016, the FUMC’s Limo to Lunch event took 7 guests to Tony and Joe’s Seafood in Georgetown, escorted by FUMC’s Bill Spellings and Chariots for Hire limo driver Arthur. Of the 7 guests, 5 were wounded warriors being treated at the WRNMMC Hospital in Bethesda, and 2 were Caregivers. We had 3 last minute cancellations due to WRNMMC Doctor ordered treatment rescheduling. It was a very enjoyable trip and luncheon for all the guests and they all were appreciative of what we do for them. The discussions and conversations were fun and informative as usual. It was noted by one of the soldiers that there are lots of “events” sponsored by many groups, but the FUMC Limo and Lunch event is the only “lunch program” that gets them off base during the day and for many, that’s what they need most. They also “don’t mind” the fantastic seafood hors d’oeuvres and delectable entrées.
On Tuesday 10/18/16 we held a Limo and Lunch event supporting veterans and caregivers from WRNMMC Hospital and Fisher Houses Bethesda, MD. We had 8 Guests plus FUMC escort Ed McMeans and Driver Tom. We lunched at Tony and Joe’s Seafood on the Georgetown Waterfront. All our guests were veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq. We had a wonderful time and each Veteran was extremely complimentary and thankful that the FUMC continues to support them and other Wounded Warriors.
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) Limo and Lunch Event to Tony & Joe’s (T&Js) Seafood Restaurant on the Potomac at Georgetown Harbor
The Limo to Lunch trip on Tuesday, August 19th was a huge success. We had a total of 13 warriors and family members. A total of 14 had shown-up and we had to turn one away, since the limo could only seat 13 – She was a family member who had shown up as an alternate in case we had a no show.
We had one of the new “13 passenger” limos, but we couldn’t fit them all inside comfortably, so one of the families from the Fisher House (2 guests) had a car nearby and graciously elected to drive themselves.
The group had a great time – lots of laughs and joking. All were very grateful for the outing. One couple had been there for 6 months and had never been out anywhere. One young lady is recovering nicely from serious brain surgery, but stated that she wants to go back to Afghanistan. It’s unlikely she will be sent back, but it is not uncommon desire among our troops to return to hazardous duty.
Considering their courage and patriotism, our soldiers and families enjoy and appreciate a simple outing to lunch in a limo. This recurring affirmation makes this program all the more meaningful.
Limo-to-Lunch Event for VA Fisher House and Medical Center in Washington DC
We had 8 Limo Riders including our FUMC sponsor Allen Kriskowski, our Limo driver John, and 6 guests from Fisher House. Five of the six Fisher House attendees as well as John our Limo Driver, were first timers on the Limo Lunch.
- Cathleen Joy Brown of Mariposa, California and her sister from Oregon were here to provide 24/7 care for their brother undergoing treatment for cancer.
- Annie Aranrnolate is here, Caregiving her daughter, an Air Force Veteran, who suffered a stroke.
- Ms. Bryant is a mother of a veteran. She spends 8 hours a week volunteering at Fisher House.
- Shawn Huffnagle, a US Navy WT2 from Lexington Park, Maryland, is undergoing colon cancer chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
- Shannon Willis, from Texas, is Caregiving her Father who is undergoing triple bypass surgery after suffering a heart attack. Her Dad is a US Army Veteran who served during the Vietnam Era and is from Maryland.
- Jason Bard, US Army Infantryman Veteran, is undergoing treatment for cancer. His treatment unfortunately affects his taste buds in a manner that minimizes the foods he can eat without ill effects.
- Pastor Andrea Ramsey is here Caregiving her brother a US Air Force 19 year veteran, undergoing surgery for a Dissecting Aorta. The Pastor is from O’Fallon, Illinois and hosts a Radio Ministry every Monday.
- John Loveland, our Driver, is a Vietnam Navy veteran from Washington, D.C. He spent an 18 month tour in Vietnam from 1965 to 1967 on assignment as what can best be described as forerunner to the Navy Seals.
We all had a wonderful time. We shared stories, experiences and even a couple of jokes. It was an honor to be among those who also served, each in their way, and sacrificed to keep America free. FUMC got Kudos from all our guests for providing such a great escape from the Fisher House confines and their reasons for being there.
A Memorial Service was held at Fischer House on Sunday, 7 August for Joseph Elmer Krebs, Jr. who passed away on 30 July 2016. Joe took part in the Korean Conflict (1950-1954) as a Staff Sergeant in the Marine Corp wherein he received 2 Purple Heart Awards involving hand to hand combat. He joined the US Army Reserves in 1957 after graduating from the University of Miami and retired as a Colonel in 1988. His many additional life accomplishments are too numerous to list here. Suffice it to say that Colonel Joe Krebs, a big man in body, was bigger than life in his contributions to his fellowman.
Joe and his Caregiver took part in several Limo Lunches since the program started. He was wheelchair bound during these outings but always had a wonderfully positive approach to life.