• Fisher House opens 'Home away from home' for veterans, family

    By: Sarahbeth Ackerman


    ORLANDO, Fla. - The Orlando Veterans Affair Medical Center cut the ribbon Wednesday on a new facility in Lake Nona designed to help families of veterans caring for their loved ones.


    The $6 million facility was created to make military families who are going through a difficult time feel as though they are in a “home away from home,” with plenty of amenities.


    In order to be eligible to stay at the facility, a veteran must be receiving care at the VA Medical Center as an inpatient, and a guest must live at least 50 miles from the medical center.


    There are 16 private suites inside, including a full kitchen, a family room, dining room and outdoor patio.


    Air Force veteran Charles Tubbs said he stayed at a Fisher House in Germany in 2006, where his brother, Donald Tubbs, was having surgery due to an injury in Afghanistan.


    Website: Orlando Fisher House


    "First priority was to get on a plane to go see him, and the biggest stressor was, ‘Where was I going to stay?’ And it was so calming to know that the Fisher House was going to be there, have a place ready for me and I didn't worry about cost or having to make arrangements to stay. And that allowed me to focus on him and his care,” said Tubbs.


    The Fisher House Foundation covers 100 percent of the operational costs, which means guests do not pay for their stay.


    "My brother, I’d say, he was there for five days. I was there for probably about a month post-surgery. Wife and daughter were with me as well," Donald Tubbs said.


    The facility will start accepting guests in early March.


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