The Pinal County Board of Supervisors played host to the unveiling and ribbon cutting ceremony of a Mobile Veteran Outreach Center at the Historical Courthouse on Saturday, September 19.
The non-profit organization, Honoring/Hiring/Helping Our Heroes of Pinal County (HOHP), acquired an RV (“Eagle One”) from Pinal County for $1.00. Veterans, volunteers, elected officials and members of the pubic gathered to hear the story of how Eagle One, one of two mobile units for veterans in our State, became reality for veterans in Pinal County.
“It was Tom Schryer that saw the need and had the vision to make this happen,” said Kim Rodriquez, HOHP Chair. Rodriquez. “Eagle One has the unique flexibility to bring multiple providers to veterans including, food boxes, counseling, educational services, and other assistance as needed.”
Rodriguez also thanked the many groups and individuals that contributed to raise the $7,500 needed to wrap the RV.
Tom Schryer, Pinal County Director of Health and Air Force Veteran, spoke at the event saying “When I met with Kim, she told me about the HOHP organization and that they were competing for a mobile vet center. As we talked, it became clear that we had what they needed.”
Schryer shared how the need was explained to County Manager Greg Stanley, Assistant Manager Leo Lew, and the Board of Supervisors, where it was clear to project had their support. After working with Kevin Costello from the County Attorney’s Office, the proper legal process was determined to sell the county RV for $1.00, since HOHP is a non-profit organization.
Mr. Schryer also publicly credited and thanked Gila River Indian Community, as they were the original source of funding for the RV. “I talked to them and they were immediately supportive. With their blessing, we put it on the December 17, 2014 Board of Supervisor’s agenda where they voted unanimously in support.”
While speaking to the veterans in attendance, Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Cheryl Chase said “It’s not about us, but it’s about each and every one of you. It’s about doing the best we can to serve you who have so bravely risked your lives to protect our freedom.”
The Chairwoman specifically thanked Schryer and Rodrigues for working together to make this vehicle a possibility for Pinal County Veterans. Vice-Chairman Pete Rios, Supervisors Anthony Smith and Todd House, along with Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu joined Chairwoman Chase, to celebrate the newest support vehicle to help Pinal County veterans. For many of these Veterans, their nearest help from the Veteran’s Administration is in Phoenix or Tucson