HOUSTON – Thirty-one Veterans from the Houston area recently participated in the 26th National Veterans Golden Age Games held in St. Louis. The team brought home six gold, four silver and six bronze medals. The Games are open to all U.S. military Veterans age 55 or older who receive care at a Department of Veterans Affairs medical facility.
Over 900 Veterans from across the United States came to compete and demonstrate the warrior spirit. For six days, Veterans competed in events like horseshoes, air rifle, nine-ball, golf, croquet, and swimming.
“The Golden Age Games is truly a life saving program for our Nation’s Veterans and life affirming for all those who have attended them,” Marilyn Iverson, Veterans Canteen Service director said. “An active lifestyle is vital to everyone’s health and well-being, and can serve as one of the best tools to health maintenance as well as disease prevention.” The Veterans Canteen Service is committed and proud to serve as a co-sponsor to the 26th National Veterans Golden Age Games.”
“We are thrilled 11 Veterans brought medals home for the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center this year,” said Recreation Therapist and Golden Age Game Coach Stacey Spicer. “Everyone had a great time during the competitions, plus the Veterans thoroughly enjoyed the trapshooting exhibition and visiting the Gateway Arch and Riverfront, historic Union Station and attending a Grizzlies baseball game.”
The other coaches for the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center were JeMarques Handy; Kelly Roux, R.N.; Billie Jean Sanders; and Solomon Green.
Veterans who brought home medals include:
Army Veteran Rena Dugat – bronze in checkers and gold in bowling
Air Force Veteran JoAn Lance – bronze in checkers and gold in bowling
Army Veteran Mack Thrash – bronze in shuffleboard and bronze in bowling
Navy Veteran Joseph Bartholow – bronze in shuffleboard
Army Veteran Billy Lacy – silver in bowling
Army Veteran George Henry – gold in dominoes
Army Veteran Norris Honeycutt – silver in horseshoes
Air Force Veteran August Gonsoulin – silver in table tennis
Air Force Veteran Marvin Weatherspoon – gold in cycling (1/4 mile) and gold in cycling (1/2 mile)
“Help Hospitalized Veterans is extremely proud to co-sponsor VA’s National Veterans Golden Age Games,” Mike Lynch, the organization’s president and CEO said. “We sincerely hope that each and every one of this year’s Veteran participants enjoyed a memorable event of camaraderie and competition, and will continue their quest to maintain good physical and mental health throughout their lives.”
The Buffalo, New York VA Medical Center will host the Games next year. For more information about the National Veterans Golden Age Games, log onto the game’s Web site at www.veteransgoldenagegames.va.gov.
# # #