A Spring Hill veteran has received a helping hand from the Weeki Wachee Area Club. The aid has come in the form of a massive ongoing service project that gives back to a man who has given to his country.
Robert Vannattan, 88, is a Korean War veteran caring for his adopted daughter at their Spring Hill home. It was tough going for the pair, with Vannattan’s daughter facing several health challenges and the family as a whole living in some harsh conditions.
“One of our Weeki Wachee Area Club members, Steven Ross, heard of a veteran named Robert Vannattan in Spring Hill who needed help from a post made by his caregiver on social media,” said Maryann Johnson, president of the Weeki Wachee Area Club. “He was 88 years old, a Korean vet, taking care of his adopted daughter, and was living out of an ice chest since his refrigerator broke, there was no washer machine, and he had no means to purchase them.”
At Ross’ suggestion, club members rushed to assist this disadvantaged family. “We visited his home and saw many things this veteran required besides new appliances,” said Johnson. “We got with Lowe’s on the appliances, purchased them and asked our VFW Post Auxiliary Chaplin Patty Laycock to come with us on the day we installed them. This was so our chaplain could see what the auxiliary could do to help with living conditions and food. We were happy to help this deserving vet.”
Steven Ross rushed to assist when he saw the Facebook post describing Vannattan’s plight. “I reached out to my handyman service workers and friends at the Weeki Wachee Area Club and said, ‘We have to reach out to help them out,'” he explained. “Our friends at Lowe’s helped us out with discounts on appliances. Soon we were able to turn in that ice chest for a fridge and otherwise make major changes in their homes and lives.”
Ross comes from a family of veterans, with several close relatives having served in the Vietnam, WWI and WWII conflicts.
“I will help any vet. I employ them at my business, S. Ross Handyman Services in Weeki Wachee, and offer them a ten percent discount on services,” he said. “These people gave so much to our country; we owe it to them.”
Ross appreciates the aid of the Weeki Wachee Area Club in making a new and better living space for a family in need. “Mary Ann, Kelly (Dodson), the club, I knew I could count on them,” he said.
Dodson, a longtime Weeki Wachee Area Club member, felt compelled to participate in this exceptional service project. “When Steven came to us, we knew we had to help,” she said. “We do anything we can to reach out to the community.”
Johnson notes that there’s no time like the holidays to brighten the lives of those in need. “What better time and way than now, as we are giving thanks for our many blessings?” she said.