HUTCHINSON COUNTY, Texas (KVII) — A veteran who is the commander of American Legion Post 671 in Hutchinson County has turned a section of his property into a place where fellow veterans can camp at.
“I can’t express how grateful I am for it,” said Joe Matlock, Vietnam Veteran, United States Army. “I was living in Amarillo and it was costing me an arm and a leg. Kevin Black, has helped me he has a trailer and he helped me set it up.”
“A veteran is a veteran and I believe in taking care of all of them as much as I can,” said Kevin Black, Commander of the American Legion Post 671, United States Army.
Black tells ABC 7 News some of the veterans who stay at his RV Park actually sleep in a tent. The RV Park has four slips where two trailers and a van currently sit at. Veterans in limbo or transit across the Texas Panhandle can stay there and the only cost is utilities if they stay in a trailer or RV Camper.
The veterans who stay there are sometimes referred by other commanders of the American Legion or from Veterans Affairs (VA) representatives. Black tells ABC 7 News he tries to make it a family atmosphere.
“Somebody needs help we bring them in, if they got a trailer we park them there and get them setup,” said Black. “If they don’t have an RV Camper or trailer then we try to supply them with something that they can stay in.”
The RV Park in Hutchinson County which Kevin Black started earlier in the year is nameless by design. In spirit or casual conversation its referred to as “Heroes helping Heroes.”
“We give each other a hard time between each other (veterans) but we’ve always got each other's back,” said Black. “Most veterans are closer to each other than they are their own family.”
Black tells ABC 7 News there are around 1,800 veterans in Hutchinson County. The RV Park is for any veteran who is from the county, Texas Panhandle or from the country who is needing a place to stay at. Plans are in the works to have access to a second campground where veterans who struggle to ask for help and seek services can talk among the brotherhood.
“We’re working on getting another campground,” said Black. “We would like to find a place out in the middle of nowhere with no cell signal. We can take veterans out and camp and just sit around a camp fire if they want to talk, they’ll talk.”
The only cost to stay in the RV Park is utilities. Some of the veterans who stay there for extended periods of time mow yards or other chores on the grounds to help out. They don’t advertise, so much of the info is spread by word of mouth.