MILITARY MATTERS: State Veterans Home, Under Construction in AL, Named After an Opelika Hero

Published: Jun. 22, 2022 at 7:10 PM EDT
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ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WTVM) - A new state veterans home is coming to Alabama, with construction just beginning on the much-anticipated project that has connections to a hero in Opelika.

Sgt. Major (Ret) Mike Sutterfield is proud of what’s happening in Enterprise, 2 hours south of Auburn, the site of a future state veterans home.

“These are state-of-the-art facilities that will 100% honor the service of those individuals as well as providing world class care to them,” he said.

Even in the heat, people came out to witness the historic groundbreaking, what some people called “a big milestone event.”

State Veterans Affairs Commissioner Kent Davis calls it a win for military vets and a boost for Coffee County.

“We’re closer to over a hundred million now on the entire project,” Davis said.

Along with $100 million, this is bringing 200 new jobs to Enterprise’s mostly rural westside, a big sign of progress, says the mayor: “You’ll have more buildings in this area not only businesses but further down the road you’ll have homes.”

This will be home to 174 veterans by the year 2024.

“This is a huge honor for my family,” Dr. Keith Adkins said.

It’s being named after a hero from Opelika: the Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. Adkins State Veterans Home.

“Poor farm boy who joined the military,” his son Keith added.

This medal of honor recipient, back in 1966 in Vietnam, ran through intense enemy fire to save others, that gunfire hitting Adkins 18 times.

“What he did for the country, what he did for our family that is going to be huge for us,” Dr. Adkins said.

The Adkins family watched as earth moved on a 182,000 square foot facility, a home for veterans who kept us in the home of the brave and land of the free. The construction is starting 2 years after Sgt. Major Adkins passed away.

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