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Apr 16, 2012 11:00:00 AM

Armed Services YMCA and MOAA's Military Welcome Center opens at Lawton-Fort Sill Regional Airport

Lawton | 7 News KSWO | April 16th

We have an update on the progress of the Military Welcome Center at the Lawton-Fort  Sill Regional  Airport.

In October, the Armed Services YMCA announced they were heading up the project, but they needed financial help, specifically $70,000 to fully outfit it and another $30,000 to operate it.

Today, they got another donation toward that, and are closing in on their goal.

We all have ideas, some great, some not so great. A Military Welcome  Center at airport was a great idea, but that's all it was, until people went to work to make it happen.

They had plans, now they have a Military  Welcome Center and big huge comfortable recliners.

"We knew we were gonna have about 3 hours before our flight was gonna go out and we saw the welcome center sign outside and you know we took a look inside and the first thing we saw was these big comfy chairs and we're like oh we gotta go in there," Pfc. Ryan Siwak said.

They had to raise $70,000, not quite there, but they're close, and more importantly they're open.

The welcome center is a partnership between Armed Services YMCA and the Military Officers Association of America auxiliary and for one member of the MOAA it is a dream come true.

"For me, it means everything to see this come to fruition," Rutti Cramer said.

Most of the time when you hear the words "dream come true" it's about a personal achievement. The Military Welcome Center at the airport didn't become a reality just because Rutti wanted it too, a lot of people have helped, but maybe this is personal, her husband Robert who has since passed, was a Vietnam War veteran.

One lady today said that she wasn't for the welcome center initially, because she didn't think they could find enough volunteers, well they have and she is proud to be one of them.

There will be an official grand opening ceremony for the welcome center one week from today.