County seeks volunteers to drive veterans

The Oct. 18 death of Dale William Driscol has left a vacancy that needs to be filled quickly, Bartholomew County Veterans Service Officer Tom Crawford said.

His death has left the county with only three people qualified to drive elderly or disabled veterans to the Roudebush Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Indianapolis, Crawford said.

Driscol had served as a back-up driver on Wednesdays, and the Veterans Service office is trying to recruit volunteers willing to assume his responsibilities, Crawford said.

Unless replacement drivers are found, Wednesday routes might have to be temporarily canceled. If that happens, fewer trips will be logged that could jeopardize future use of the Ford Escape used to transport the veterans, Crawford said.

The vehicle, which holds up to four passengers, is jointly owned by the Disabled American Veterans and the Roudebush Medical Center, Crawford said.

Those who wish to serve as a volunteer drive must meet requirements include:

Passing an FBI background and fingerprint check

Having a valid driver’s license and insurance

Completing a volunteer orientation

While volunteer drivers may be asked to drive as little as one day a month, the biggest inconvenience is a required multi-day physical and health screening at the VA Hospital, Crawford said.

For more information, contact Larry Garrity at 812-379-1540.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.