Group transforming golf course into safe haven for Mid-South veterans

Updated: Nov. 21, 2019 at 3:27 PM CST
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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - A portion of the old Memphis defense depot is being transformed into a special place for veterans.

The site was recently passed over to the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1113.

For almost two decades, the Memphis Athletic Ministries has operated the golf course on the property of the old defense depot until recently.

The Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1113 has some big plans for the property -- transforming the course into a safe haven for people just like them.

“Veterans and their families can come here and be in an atmosphere that is accommodating for their unique set of circumstances,” said Leonard Perkins, Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1113 president.

A team from Toles and Associates Engineers is even volunteering their services to make the course more accessible for the veterans.

"One of the big challenges here is the fact that it is a walking nine-hole golf course, and we look forward to adding cart paths and carts to help the veterans maneuver around the course,” said James Toles, Toles and Associates Engineers president.

Leonard Perkins, the president of the Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter 1113 says they will continue providing youth services at the course.

But they will offer new opportunities, like equine therapy, accommodating both veterans and their families.

“This right here is something that's going to mean a lot to a lot of veterans,” said Terrance Bogard, Army veteran.

And of course, with the transformation comes a new name.

The course will be called the All Veterans Golf Plex, as it will serve all veterans no matter their branch or background.

“I know when I came back from Vietnam it wasn’t a welcoming thing for us, and we took that to heart. And to get a place like this for all veterans, I’m proud of it,” said Toles.

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