ABOUT THE WAR MEMORIAL CENTER
When Randall County moved to their new offices and the Randall County Annex became available to the TPWM, we knew it would be a perfect place to offer veteran services, programs for veterans and their families, outreach programs, an education area and a Military Chapel. Listed below are descriptions of space, programs, and partners that will be in the approximately 20,000 square foot building on approximately 2.88 acres.
Offices: There are eight large offices on the main floor.
Chapel: A chapel will be constructed along the north wall of the building in the old Randall County Courtroom and will be used for nondenominational services, funerals, weddings, and other events. The room will seat approximately 55 people and have a private room adjacent to it for brides and families. Also, there will be a foyer available for people to gather in front of the entrance of the Chapel.
Education Area: We are developing an Education Center in the middle of the building that will be of great interest to our visitors. This area of the building will have very high tech, interactive ways of learning done with the latest technology. It is all very exciting and we can’t wait to introduce this to the Texas Panhandle. This room will have a folding wall allowing it to be opened to the reception area for large meetings, receptions, and other gatherings.
Reception Area: There will be a greeting area located next to the front doors with greeters stationed during business hours to immediately meet visitors and help navigate them to the correct area upon arrival and be available to help them at every turn during their time at the Center. This part of the building will have display cases and a priceless gift from Charles Hendrick who has generously donated a wonderful and extensive collection of valuable minted and signed exact replicas of WWII ships, vehicles, planes, tanks, etc. We are honored to have the opportunity to display it. We will also be able to feature interviews from our veterans and their families in this area.
Gift Shop: There will be a glassed-walled gift shop that will offer books, posters, hats, T-Shirts, ship and plane replicas and many other memorabilia items.
Conference Room: a 24’x18’ conference room will be designed on the East side of the building that will be available for meetings.
Basement: The 8,500 square foot basement has 10 offices, a conference room, reception area, plus a very large open space for training, conferences, movies, etc.
The General consensus is that the Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center will be the front door for Veteran Referrals in the Texas Panhandle. This year we were successful in working with Texas Panhandle Centers and Family Support Services to form a Collaboration for programs to assist Veterans and their families in referral and direct services. This Collaboration has received several grants for program support including the Texas Veterans and Family Alliance and the HHS Community Mental Health Grant. Navigators from the Family Support Services Veterans Team will office at the TPWM Center to provide easy access for referrals. Other collaborative efforts include: One of these veterans’ services will focus on mental health. We have a collaborative effort with the Center for Brain Health from the University of Texas Medical School in Dallas. They will partner with Texas Panhandle War Memorial Center by sending a team to Amarillo twice per year for 2 to 3 days per visit to provide PTS training for our Veterans and their families. We are also working with the Texas Tech Medical School as well with referrals to their Psychiatric Department. There will be a committee formed to bring together groups of businessmen and women related to specific businesses. They will meet frequently to connect Veterans to jobs in the various respective businesses. Another group will be developed to provide peer to peer counseling and assist our veterans in every step of the job hunting process from job identification to filling out applications, to traveling to the job interview with the veteran and follow up review.
Memorial Ceremonies: Fred Rangel, the TPWM Board President will continue to do his excellent job planning and executing wonderful Ceremonies honoring Veterans and their families throughout the year. These events are presented at the Texas Panhandle War Memorial grounds and facility.
Bus Tours: The bus tours arriving to tour the War Memorial continue to grow and with the new Center and new artifacts available soon, the expectation of tours growth is great.
WOWW: Windows on a Wider World will be helping with our outreach program for the Texas Panhandle region. We will be presenting educational programs honoring and remembering our veterans. We also have a wonderful program about the Monument Men and how they have preserved so much of the history of the world by rescuing artifacts before they were destroyed.
Panhandle PBS: Plans to provide us with complete access to their video library which includes scientific and military library material related to our mission for the Education Area of the Center.
Panhandle Plains Historical Museum: (PPHM) have developed trunk shows which will allow the PPHM to share with our facility as we present programs using their museum artifacts and information related to our educational mission.
Friends of Texas Panhandle War Memorial: A group of people functioning as a guild will help raise money by sponsoring events and having membership opportunities available. We have had one event and hope our grand opening will be the next GRAND EVENT!!
USS ARIZONA: A large piece of the side and deck of the USS Arizona which was bombed and sunk during the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor has been provided as an outdoor exhibit which will be encased in clear Plexiglas for easy viewing and protection from the environment. It will be a magnificent addition for teaching and will be placed between the F/100 and the Huey Helicopter for presenting many differences of war on land, air, and sea but all for our country’s safety and independence. December 7th was the dedication of the USS Arizona at the Happy State Bank/Randall County Events Center. It will be transferred to its permanent home on the Texas Panhandle War Memorial grounds when weather permits.