Hospitalized Vets saluted in Iowa City - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Hospitalized veterans saluted in Iowa City


Lyle Seydel, a retired Lieutenant Colonel with the U.S. Army who served in Korea and Vietnam, has been a big Hawkeye fan since his days growing up in Iowa City.

"My dad has been going to Iowa football games since we returned to Iowa City in the 70's," said Jennifer Seydel, Lyle's daughter.

Because of chronic health problems, it's been years since he's been able to make it to Kinnick Stadium to see a game.

He was surprised when the Hawkeyes came to see him Saturday at the Iowa City V.A. Medical Center.

"It was really great that they selected me to visit," Seydel said.

V.A. Medical Centers across the country are opening their doors this week to the public to let people say thank you to veterans.

It's the very reason why backup quarterback Jake Rudock and many of his teammates took time on Saturday to be with Seydel.

"It's the least we could do for how much they've sacrificed to give us the way we live today and each and every day," Rudock said.

Seydel and thousands of other veterans are depending on the V.A.'s care as they battle health issues..

Hospital leaders say the purpose of this open house is more than just showing appreciation, but also to make people aware of the need for volunteers.

"It's been hard over the last few years it seems to get volunteers in," said Dawn Oxley, acting director of the Iowa City V.A. Healthcare System.

The V. A. In Iowa City has a need for more than 40 full time volunteers, helping with everything from transporting patients to administrative work.

"They visit patients.  They go around and take coffee to the waiting rooms. They're a huge support," Oxley said.

It's part of a national effort to help give back to veterans like Seydel who are in need, after they have given much of their lives protecting American freedoms.



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