SPOTSYLVANIA, Va. (WRIC) — A hit and run driver wiped out transportation for sick and disabled veterans near Fredericksburg.
The driver plowed into the only van those local veterans use to go back and forth to Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center.
“I was devastated,” says veteran Roy Murphy.
After he learned the van was destroyed, Murphy realized getting to Richmond would be a struggle. The disabled marine is legally blind.
“Basically I’ll have to rely on friends or somebody to get me to the VA so that you know I can actually go through my appointments,” added Murphy.
The Fredericksburg Disabled American Veterans van transported about 90 veterans a month. It takes them on the hour-long trek to and from McGuire.
DAV transportation coordinator Kristi Corbett explained to 8News, “This is their way to get there. This is their only way to get there.”
But now the van is ruined and there’s no backup vehicle to replace it. So many veterans won’t get the medical care they need.
“I have patients who go 40 days straight due to radiation,” said Corbett “And they must go every day or they have to start their whole thing over again, so it’s a hardship on them a lot.”
Murphy added, “I don’t even know how many veterans we have that rely on that service and people who are worse off than me, so that just put a stop on everybody’s ability to get to the VA.”
DAV is trying to get an old van repaired, but the vehicle has more than 100,000 miles on it and its air conditioner is broken.
Even if it fixes that vehicle, it’s going to be awhile before they can get the veterans back to Richmond.
The organization says it’s always in need of donations and volunteer drivers. If you can help, reach out to Dawn Brewster at Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center at 804-675-5313.