The Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB) has eight Texas State Veterans Homes across the state. These homes provide affordable, long-term skilled nursing care for Texas Veterans, their spouses and Gold Star parents. They are designed to enhance quality of life with a caring and dignified setting appropriate to those men and women who have served our country with honor.
The staff at our homes go the extra mile every day to provide the residents with special activities and celebrations to show them all how much they are loved. Here are a just a few of the events that have taken place since the beginning of the new year.
Ussery Roan Texas State Veterans Home
The Texas State Veterans Home in Amarillo threw a Valentine’s Day Party and Dance.
Lamun-Lusk-Sanchez Texas State Veterans Home
The staff at the Texas State Veterans Home in Big Spring hosted a Hawaiian Luau and BBQ for residents and their families on Wednesday, January 25. The event featured Hawaiian desserts, cake, and pictures at a photo booth with their loved ones. Big Spring Mayor Larry McLellan, Sheriff Stan Parker, Chief Fire Marshal Craig Ferguson and volunteers from the Midland Vet Center, Texas Veterans Commission, Hands of Compassion Home Care, Texas PRN, West Texas ADRC, 1st CAV Veteran, and other organizations joined in the fun. Photography credit goes to Bev Brooks who donated her services for the event.
Clyde W. Cosper Texas State Veterans Home
Mini Encounters visited the Texas State Veterans Home in Bonham in February. Brave, an Appaloosa mini, walked the halls of the home and the residents’ reaction to seeing a horse inside was priceless! Brave is a 33-inch miniature horse with the patience and personality to be an excellent therapy animal. He was a show horse and drove a mini carriage prior to joining Mini Encounters and now does therapy and also parades in the local area. He has a tie collection he selectively wears along with high top tennies. Brave has never met a stranger. Mini Encounters will be visiting each quarter.
The staff at the home also threw a Valentine’s Day party and the Wolfe City High School and Ector Beta Club visited and brought Valentines for the Veterans.
Ambrosio Guillen Texas State Veterans Home
The Texas State Veterans Home in El Paso crowned their Valentine’s King and Queen: Mr. George Hilburn and Mrs. Jennie Stengal. Congratulations were in order for Col. (R) Catherine Betz who was recognized for her honorable service in Korea and Vietnam as a medical and surgical nurse. Col. Betz will be 93 in October. We are forever grateful for her service!
Frank M. Tejeda Texas State Veterans Home
The Texas State Veterans Home in Floresville hosted a Valentine’s Day party on the 14th. This year they had a crowned court from both the traditional side and the Memory Support Neighborhood. A big thank you to the Knights of Columbus members (wearing blue shirts) who came and provided a banner, refreshments, and helped with the Valentine Party. They adopted the home as part of the VA’s National Salute program.
Alfredo Gonzalez Texas State Veterans Home
The staff at the Texas State Veterans Home in McAllen had a blast entertaining the residents on Valentine’s Day, it was their moment to shine! A few of the residents enjoyed the nice weather with a friendly game of volley ball. Etta skipped the game to spend time with a puppy named Rose.
William R. Courtney Texas State Veterans Home
The residents at the Texas State Veterans Home in Temple celebrated Valentine’s Day with a festive party. Volunteers were on the scene to pass out love and teddy bears. In keeping with tradition, a Valentine’s King, Jimmie Whitlock, and Queen, Nelton Warren, were crowned and a wonderful time was had by all!
On Tuesday, February 15, the K-9 Comfort Dog Ministry from St. Paul Lutheran Church in Fort Worth brought golden retrievers, Pax and Phoebe to visit with the residents and staff. World War II Veteran Wilton Easter honored everyone with an acapella rendition of Amazing Grace and stole everyone’s hearts. Pax and Phoebe are regular visitors at the Veterans Home and the Central Texas VA Hospital in Temple
Later that week, the Veterans’ in-house poker club sat down to enjoy a few rounds of Texas Hold Em’.
Watkins-Logan Texas State Veterans Home
On Valentine’s Day the residents at the Texas State Veterans Home in Tyler were treated with a Sweetheart Luncheon on hosted by the Angel Chefs of Flint Baptist Church. Gene Ramsey provided background music while the Veterans and their sweethearts enjoyed strawberry spinach and walnut salad with homemade chicken spaghetti casserole. This is the second year the Angel Chefs have hosted the Annual Sweetheart Luncheon and they enjoy it so much they are already planning to return next year!
There are Texas State Veterans Homes in Amarillo, Big Spring, Bonham, El Paso, Floresville, McAllen, Temple and Tyler. A ninth home is currently being constructed in Houston.
Because the VA subsidizes much of a Veteran’s cost to stay at a VLB Texas State Veterans Home, daily out-of-pocket rates are well below average and include the cost of medications for Veterans. Residents can choose between a spacious private or semi-private room based upon availability. Alzheimer’s units at each home provide highly specialized care, including beautifully landscaped, secure courtyards. Like all VLB programs, the Texas State Veterans Homes are self-supporting and cost Texas taxpayers virtually nothing.
For additional information on VLB Texas State Veterans Homes and Cemeteries, and land, home and home improvement loans, call 1-800-252-VETS (8387), or visit TexasVeterans.com. Follow the Texas Veterans Land Board on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.