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Plans to build new Veterans Complex move forward

The birds and bike trails, home to the vast, rolling hills surrounding the top of Center St., could soon be sharing space with a new park tailored for veterans and their families.

On Thursday the Marine Corps League of Pocatello will meet to consolidate efforts in another push toward making the new park a reality.

Marine Corps League of Pocatello member Kale Bergeson said this park is not solely for veterans and their families – anyone will be able to enjoy its amenities. But, he added, there’s a need in the community for a park tailored to veterans’ needs.

“To be able to give back to my community and help my fellow veterans in any way I can means a lot to me and it’s my passion,” Bergeson said. “This is an opportunity for them to come and help with the project

He said the tentative plan is to also put in a military circuit training course for veterans and community members with varying abilities.

“The course will be for veterans, veterans’ families, elderly, disabled – we’re just hoping to bring veterans back to this community.”

Right now there is a push to bring more veterans back into southeastern Idaho.

Idaho State University’s Director of Veterans Student Services Todd Johnson said right now southeast Idaho rings-in as one of the most veteran-friendly regions across the entire Gem State.

“I see a consistent number of students and graduates every year, which is a good indicator,” Johnson said, regarding the number of veterans Pocatello is able to maintain. “Every time I graduate about 80 students, I see more than that join as new ISU students the next semester.”

He also expects an influx of more people moving into the area with the new veterans cemetery coming in.

The Corps’ Commandant Darin Letzring said the Katsilometes family donated the property to the organization back in 2015.

Now, they are just trying to raise the money to make the new Katsilometes Veterans Complex happen.

Bergeson said anyone and everyone is welcome to give their input on the design of the project at the organization’s website here:

The tentative renderings can also be viewed at that website and are courtesy of Rocky Mountain Engineering and Surveying.

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