A sad group


I’m writing this letter to express my dismay about the recent termination of the free Library Services available for both veterans and their families at the Oscar G. Johnson VA Medical Center in Iron Mountain.

In years past until early in this month of May 2014, a room was designated as a library that contained donated hard-cover and paperback books. These could be borrowed and returned whenever the veteran had a medical appointment or was hospitalized at the facility.

Those who utilized this free service considered it a treat to go to the library itself and even better, wander to where bookcases were located on various floors of the building holding more reading material.

Besides local, caring people constantly donating books for this project, there are also national organized groups of volunteers such as “Operation Paperbacks” or “Books for Troops” that route books to VA Centers across our country including the one here in Iron Mountain.

My husband is a veteran and when he has had medical appointments through the years, I have often accompanied him. While he is at his appointments, I eagerly would find my way to the library or the various bookcases to return the books we had borrowed on our last visit and then, happily, would begin browsing to find more “gems” to read.

You can imagine how disappointed I was when, in early May of this year, I discovered that the Library Services no longer existed at the facility and only one bookcase was still temporarily available. No signs were posted in the complex to notify those of us who so enjoyed this free service.

While I was there that day, I wasn’t the only one who came looking for books. We were a sad group.

We were unable to receive information why this suddenly happened. It is my hope that this decision to discontinue the Library Services could be reconsidered.

I would encourage anyone out there who shares my desire to have books available at our local VA Center contact the facility’s administration as I have to protest this action.

Thank you for your assistance in this project.

Rose V. Marcely

Dunbar, Wis.