Barnegat man donates land for veterans’ retreat
Marty Weber, a local veteran, wanted to help his fellow veterans who were struggling with homelessness and/or mental health issues, when he got a “sign from God” to build a retreat for homeless vets in memory of his life partner of 31 years, Jeffrey Poissant. The two had met in Germany in the 80s when they were both in the army. Poissant died in 2017 of cancer.
Weber told News 12 New Jersey “We always planned on helping vets somehow. And God told me one night sitting here, help the vets, because I was going to leave the state and just retire somewhere.”
The couple bought a house on Route 72 in Barnegat, later acquiring the adjacent 36 acres, which is what Weber is donating. He has partnered with Just Believe in Toms River to develop his dream. He told NJ.com that he has been offered $3 million for the parcel, but he declined and now it will house “Jeff’s Camp.”
The main house will have seven bedrooms, each shared by two people. In addition to the veterans’ residences, Weber also plans a medical facility, a chapel, and a thrift store run by veterans. The treatment facility will be run by New Life Addiction Services and will offer intensive detoxification programs as well as outpatient services.
The thrift store will help the veterans reacclimate to society by serving the public. The estimated cost of the project is $2.5 million which they hope to raise by a combination of private contributions and government grants.
The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.