Working Together To Assist ‘Warriors in Transition’

Working Together To Assist ‘Warriors in Transition’

Panels connects Fort Belvoir with surrounding communities.

U.S. Rep. Jim Moran opens the discussion with a question of ways to facilitate how to maximize rehabilitation for our wounded warriors.

U.S. Rep. Jim Moran opens the discussion with a question of ways to facilitate how to maximize rehabilitation for our wounded warriors. Photo by Louise Krafft.

— U.S. Rep. Jim Moran and Fairfax County Supervisor Gerry Hyland hosted a roundtable conversation on Monday, July 15, at Fort Belvoir to discuss and brainstorm how to better coordinate public land use, the non-profit community, and Fort Belvoir’s resources to maximize soldiers’ rehabilitation.

Moran opened the conversation with: "The purpose of this meeting is to bring together the key stakeholders — nonprofit organizations, community groups, and staff at Fort Belvoir — to discuss ways we can maximize rehabilitation for our wounded warriors. Northern Virginia has substantial natural resources and residents with a strong desire to build on Fort Belvoir's efforts to help our wounded warriors. It has the potential to serve as a model for wounded warrior care across the nation. This roundtable is a starting point — in the coming months we will continue to work together to create synergy with the Warriors in Transition Unit and the surrounding community."

Hyland noted: “The conversation opened a very large door to establishing a meaningful relationship with the military in regards to offering community activities to enhance the rehabilitation of the wounded warriors at Fort Belvoir.”

Representatives from nearly three dozen community, county, state and national organizations attended and included: Bureau of Land Management, Fairfax County Park Authority, Mason Neck State Park, Pohick Bay Regional Park, Mason Neck National Wildlife Refuge, Friends of Meadowood, Gunston Hall, South County Federation, South County Chamber of Commerce, Mason Neck Citizens Association, Lorton Community Action Center, Meadowood Stables, Fort Belvoir Community Hospital, USO, National Military Family Association, Team River Runners Disabled Kayaking Club, Lorton American Legion Post 162, Arcadia Farms and Simple Changes.

Moran and Hyland invited Fort Belvoir Commander Col. Greg Gadson along with fort staff members: Deputy to the Garrison Commander Steve Brooks, Command Sergeant Major Chet Grelock, Director of Warrior Transition Office Jean Whalen, Warrior Transition Battalion Commander LTC Carl Curriera, Acting Battalion Command Sergeant Major of the Warrior Transition Battalion 1SG Archie Burton, Staff Judge Advocate Col. Joseph Keeler, Fort Belvoir Director of Family – Morale – Welfare & Recreation Kim Mills, Military Adapted Sports Program Coordinator Steve Smutak, Director of Public Affairs at Fort Belvoir Don Carr and Director of Strategic Communications and Public Affairs for the Northern Regional Medical Center Terry J. Goodman. The Commander and staff answered questions about procedures in making use of the stakeholder’s donations.