By Lee Benson
If houses had a star system like hotels, the Fisher House would get five stars.
"When they hear 'military' people probably think of stark barracks and metal beds," says Ray as he points out luxuries like HD televisions in every room and plush chairs and couches in the lobby. "And then they find this. It's first class all the way. It's a way of saying thank you for your service."
The house's namesake is the late Zachary Fisher, who made his fortune in the construction business and gave as much away as possible to veterans and their needs, including the initial donation that established the Fisher House fund in 1990.
The houses have been built at a three-a-year pace ever since. The Fisher House Foundation takes the lead, but much of the funding for upkeep and management comes from local volunteers and charitable donations.
A fundraising golf tournament for Salt Lake's Fisher House will be held Friday, Sept. 14, at Stonebridge Golf Course in West Valley City. Sponsored by Knights of Columbus, "Foursomes for Fisher House" will raise funds to buy golf carts to help shuttle family members back and forth from the medical center. (You can register online at https://sjb-parish.weshareonline.org).
"When people see what's happening here they want to get involved," says Bachiller.
Joann and Jerry Hornbeck would second that. Even as Jerry, a 70-year-old Vietnam War veteran, was recovering from his open-heart surgery in Salt Lake, Joann and Jerry's daughter and granddaughter in Denver were already volunteering at the Fisher House there.
"It's incredible, the service they provide," says Joann. "I'll tell you, you come up here, your husband's dying, you know no one, you have nowhere to stay, and then you find an absolute Godsend. It's just an unbelievable thing."
"Holidays, birthdays & anniversaries have been celebrated with tears and smiles with people who truly understand what the other person is experiencing."
- Kamryn Jaroszewski