On Nov. 9, 2018, at 11 a.m., the Raymond G. Murphy VA Medical Center hosted the groundbreaking of the Albuquerque Fisher House at 1501 San Pedro Dr. SE. The American Legion Riders started the ceremony with a motorcycle parade and KOB-4 anchor, Steve Soliz was the master of ceremonies for the event. Remarks were given by community organizers and medical staffs with special remarks by New Mexico Friends of Fisher House President Rita Navarrete and Blue Star Mother Ruby Garcia.
“We know how important it is to have loved ones around when a Veteran is hospitalized,” said New Mexico VA Health Care System Director Andrew Welch. “The Albuquerque Fisher House will allow caregivers to be within walking distance of their Veteran.”
The Albuquerque Fisher House will provide a “home away from home” at no cost for families and caregivers of Veterans and active duty military personnel receiving treatment at the New Mexico VA Medical Center. Fisher House Foundation has built 78 Fisher Houses in the U.S. and overseas, with 36 on the grounds of VA medical centers. The Raymond G. Murphy VAMC will soon join that number.
“We are grateful to the Fisher House Foundation and the New Mexico community for working diligently over the last decade to help bring this tremendous gift to our medical center, said Welch. “We are excited for construction to begin, and we look forward to the day we can open the doors.”
Located on the parade grounds on the medical center, the two-story, 16-suite home will feature a common kitchen, laundry facility, spacious dining room and an inviting living room with a library and toys for children. In 2018, VA Fisher Houses have accommodated nearly 28,000 Veteran families, saving them more than $18 million in lodging costs.
“It is an honor to lead an effort that brings families together when they need it most – during the healing process,” said Ken Fisher. “We know that there is a need for a Fisher House in nearly every community, but sometimes the effort to build this ‘home away from home’ requires a little more passion and perseverance. Fisher House Albuquerque and the local community have been tireless in their efforts, and that is why we can celebrate this momentous occasion, ready to move forward with construction.”
The Albuquerque Fisher House expected to open to Veteran families in 2019. For more information, visit www.fisherhouse.org