Muskogee County Veteran Refuge To Open Soon

Friday, October 20th 2017, 10:57 pm
By: Justin Shrair

A new place to help Veterans in Muskogee County is in the works. 

It's called "The Barracks" and was founded by a 20-year veteran. 

The Barracks is a facility that, once it opens, will provide all types of resources for veterans all under one roof. And with an extra $8,000 boost from a recent fundraiser, its making steady progress. 

After Veteran Victor Lezama said vandals damaged The Barracks this summer, he showed us the progress that has been made so far. 

"We've painted the place inside we’ve got the walls painted, United Way, and Oklahoma Natural Gas, they chose us as one of their day of caring, they came in with their groups and painted all the walls for us,” he said. 

Once open it will house a variety of resources that will teach veterans everything from basic computer skills to job skills and will even provide housing. 

Lezama said the next step is to paint those walls and work on the plumbing in the former nursing home. 

"We have electricians that are currently reestablishing all the wiring that was damaged from the vandalism cause right now we have minimum power," he said. 

Lezama said the outpouring of support has been amazing. He said although vandalism set them back a couple of months, the community stepped up. From donations of furniture to ceiling tiles, he said everything is moving forward. 

"To us its five star, you know compared to what we have like wooden furniture that we could make, but this stuff that we have is for our classrooms," he said.  

The slogan of The Barracks is "Veterans Helping Veterans" and so far, the project is living up to its name, with many veterans from Muskogee stepping in to lend a helping hand all working toward a common goal.

"We wanna come in and get and bridge that gap between the bad and the ugly and maybe just giving them a second chance that they need just to get back into society," Lezama said. 

Lezama hopes to have it open in four to five months. 

For more information about how to help, check out their Facebook page.