Financial struggles have forced a New Whiteland veterans organization to move out of the building it called home for more than 30 years.
The New Whiteland Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 6978 has moved from the post on Main Street in Whiteland into a building less than half the size until the members can save enough money to construct a new post.
“We didn’t want to move. We all loved it there. It broke everybody’s hearts,” VFW Commander Eddie Bullock said.
The organization had to sell the former building because fewer veterans spend time at the post, buying alcohol and food, and the post could not afford to pay utility bills while also paying off a loan it took out to cover penalty fees for past due taxes, Bullock said.
In recent years, the post has made about a fifth of the money it used to make off food and beverage sales, Bullock said.
“It was when the bottom dropped out of the economy. We used to have really big bingos with 100 people or so. Now they’re down to less than 30,” Bullock said.
He added the organization is not gaining new members among younger veterans because they are busy with their families and don’t have time to join the VFW.
“We’ve got to keep it open for them,” Bullock said. “They think it’s not important to them right now, but when they get older, then they’ll come to us asking for help.”