Brownsville Disabled American Veterans Chapter Needs Help

By: Daniel Kemp Email
By: Daniel Kemp Email

A leaky roof, no heating or air, and walls and floors destroyed by termites.

That's how members of Chapter 32 of the Disabled American Veterans in Edmonson County described their building before a much needed renovation recently started taking place.

But there's still work to be done with little money to do it.

Volunteers are stepping up daily to give wounded soldiers a place to meet.

And while that help is appreciated, the organization is still having to turn to the community.

"It was getting dangerous for us to be in," said Wiley Willis, long-time commander of the Disabled American Veterans Chapter, in Brownsville. "Crews started coming in here and volunteering. They tore this place up."

Wiley Willis has stormed the beaches of Normandy.

He's seen a lot in his day, but what he wants to see now is a community help it's disabled veterans.

"We're all war veterans ourselves. I'm 87 years old. A World War II Veteran--Normandy, Battle of the Bulge. I know what they need," he said.

What they need is a building.

A place where service men and women can learn about their benefits.

"Those that are able, they've gone through a lot of pain since they've come out of battle. They've suffered all of their life," Willis said.

"We can't do enough for these vets," said Don Starnes, a local volunteer helping with re-building efforts. "They've put their lives on the line for us so that we could be free."

Starnes is just one of the many volunteer's helping put some life back into these walls.

"This is all a donated project. Nobody's made a dime off of it. We're just pitching in helping our vets here," he said.

But those donations, while helpful, are still short.

And Willis wants to be ready, when America's new age of disabled veterans need him.

"The boys are going to be coming home from Iraq and Afghanistan pretty soon, and they're going to need help. We need to be ready for them."

If you're interested in helping the D.A.V. finish their building, you can contact Wiley Willis at 597-2488, or Don Starnes at 791-7444 or 597-2526.

Donations may be mailed to:
Wiley Willis
P.O. Box 404
Brownsville, KY 42210

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