Clay County veterans who've had trouble finding transportation to and from their VA doctor appointments have help available. On Monday, Mayor Tom Arthur handed over the keys of a surplus city police car to County Commissioner President Dave Parr.
The County will let the Veterans Association use the car to help Veterans in Clay County get back and forth to the VA medical facilities at Terre Haute and Indianapolis.
The Ford Crown Victoria was previously used as the police canine car. Transportation for vets has long been a problem in the county. About four months ago Clay County Veterans Officer Les Waldon began looking for ways to fill this need. VFW Men's Auxiliary member Charlie Brown contacted City Councilman Jim Sheese to see if it was possible to get a surplus police car for that purpose.
The City Council, County Commissioners and Mayor Arthur all worked together to get the project completed. Other Clay County residents were instrumental in getting the vehicle in prime road condition. Jim Cassidy, Jerry Walker and Joe Hamilton donated time, labor and parts. Ralph Howell provided the striping and Joel and Walt TerMeer did the lettering on the back.
Walden said the County will pay for the insurance and maintenance of the vehicle.
"Now all we need are some volunteers to help drive the car," Walden said. "We need some good people to help drive these veterans to the VA facilities whenever they have appointments. All that's required is for the individual to have an Indiana driver's license and a good driving record."
He has four drivers lined up so far but more help is needed to meet all of the demands. Anyone interested in becoming a volunteer driver and helping out some veterans should contact Walden at the Clay County Veterans Service Office at (812) 448-9015.