Congressman Farr (D-Carmel) today introduced H.R. 272 to name the future Department of Veterans Affairs and Department of Defense outpatient clinic in Marina "The General William H. Gourley Federal Outpatient Clinic: A Joint VA-DoD Health Care Facility" in honor of Gen. Gourley's lifetime of service to his country, his fellow military service members and veterans.
"General Gourley was a champion of our nation's service men and women," Farr said. "His constant devotion and determination to build the joint clinic on Fort Ord has resulted in a facility that will truly benefit the military and veteran community living on and around the Monterey Peninsula"
Gen. Gourley, who passed away last year, was a key actor in the clinic's development. His interest in designating a section of Fort Ord as a joint clinic for both veterans and service members began when the base first appeared on the BRAC list.
Because of his efforts, the clinic, which is only the second joint clinic in the United States, will serve over 80,000 veterans and active and retired military service members in the area.
Gen. Gourley's military service began in the late 1960s when he served in Germany, where he shared MREs (Meal, Ready-to-Eat) with Elvis Presley. He later served in Korea and Vietnam. After returning from his tour in Vietnam, he was assigned to the Pentagon and rose to work with then General Colin Powell on the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
In his retirement, Gen. Gourley worked to enhance life for active duty soldiers and veterans living in Central California by working to improve TRICARE service on the Monterey peninsula; establish a veterans ceremony on the old Fort Ord; make health care more affordable and accessible to military retirees; and placing the groundwork for a joint DOD-VA health care clinic.
The introduction of this bill will ensure Gen Gourley's legacy as an advocate for current members of the military and veterans will prevail.