Congressman Mike Turner commended the news that the National Park System Advisory Board has unanimously approved the nomination of the Central Branch, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers/Dayton Veterans Administration Home, as a National Historic Landmark. This marks that final portion of the formal approval process before it goes to the Secretary of the Interior, who will make the actual designation.
"Since its establishment, the Central Branch has provided healthcare and rehabilitation services for generations of our veterans and played a significant part in shaping the rich history of the Dayton region," said Turner.
Congressman Turner has long supported the Dayton VAMC to be designated as a National Historic Landmark. In 2003, Turner authored the Veterans National Heritage Preservation Act (H.R. 1762), which included a provision requiring the National Park Service, in consultation and cooperation with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), to conduct a National Historic Landmark (NHL) study to identify sites that commemorate key facilities managed by the National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers between 1865 and 1930. Dayton was specifically included as a site to be studied. At the same time, Turner worked closely with the NPS and the VA to move forward with such a study.
"If designated by the Secretary of the Interior, this will ensure that current and future generations develop a greater understanding and appreciation for the sacrifices made by the brave men and women of our Armed Forces and the dedicated professionals providing them care. With Memorial Day celebrations occurring in Dayton throughout this week, this will be welcome news throughout our community," added Turner.
On October 21, 2004, the VA, NPS, and Congressman Turner signed an agreement to conduct a theme study to assess the significance of the National Homes and prepare NHL nominations. The signing ceremony was held at the Putnam Library on the Dayton VA Campus.