Military families near Fort Riley being forced to move
MILFORD, Kan. – They’re a military family based near Fort Riley. As of next week, they say they’ll have no place to live.
The Mondick Family lives in a campground in Milford, Kansas. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is forcing them to leave. Teresita Mondick says she and her three young children have made their home in a camper near Ft. Riley for about six months.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers owns the land, and as of next Thursday morning, its policy says she’ll have to take her 40-foot camper and find a new place to live.
The Mondicks live in a camper while Teresita’s husband, Sgt. Jeremy Mondick, is serving a tour of duty in Afghanistan.
A spokesman with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers told FOX 4 News the campgrounds were never meant to be permanent homes, and that residents were notified months ago they’d need to leave.
“I understand policy is policy, and regulation is regulation,” Mondick said. “They have to toe the line, but there can always be exceptions to the rule.”
Teresita also served in the military, and she’s accustomed to being relocated for deployment. She said her family still owns a home in Tennessee near Fort Campbell, and can’t afford additional housing costs.
“There are no available camp-spots for me to move to,” Mondick said. “If I were to stay in the area, it would be a lottery. It’s the draw of the hat. There’s no guarantees.”
Mondick says she’s likely to take the kids, and relocate back to Tennessee, where she’d stay until the end of Jeremy’s deployment. She hopes, by that time, a new camp space will be available, perhaps back at Acorn Resort.
Campground managers chose not to go on camera with us, but they tell us as many as 19 military families make their home here, and they’re in the same situation as the Mondicks.
We also spoke to Greg Wilson, a director of real estate with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. He says he knows his office has a responsibility to take care of these families, but his office must enforce policy.
Teresita Mondick says managers at Acorn Resort are sympathetic to her trouble, but they’re required to enforce government policy.
A spokesperson for U.S. Senator Jerry Moran shared this statement with FOX 4 News regarding this situation:
“It’s unfortunate that the military families who reside at Acorns Resort now face uncertainty about their housing situation. Senator Moran and his staff have worked to prevent a disruption through numerous conversations with local stakeholders including Junction City Officials, the Geary County CVB and the Junction City Chamber of Commerce. Additionally, we have made requests for information and had discussions with Department of Defense personnel at the Pentagon and Ft. Riley. Senator Moran will continue to pursue ways to be supportive of the families potentially impacted.”
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