State Regent's Project 

Operation Black Hills Cabin

Operation Black Hills CabinCertain events that occur in your youth have a tendency to haunt you and impact your way of thinking in years to come. I grew up during the Vietnam War. One could not escape what was happening half a world away. It was on the news continually. Families were impacted in a variety of ways. We witnessed the horrors encountered by our soldiers, young men that hadn't a clue what was being asked of them.  

Due to the memories I have of our men returning from the Vietnam War, it is not surprising that I would select Operations Black Hills Cabin (OBHC) as my State Regent's Project. As I previously lived in Custer, South Dakota, where the cabin is located, I was able to witness the healing of the families during their stay.

Operation Black Hills Cabin (OBHC) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide a comfortable, peaceful and supportive respite to qualified, combat-injured veterans and their families, from the Iraq/Afghanistan operations, in their rehabilitation from their traumatic and stressful experiences while serving the interests of our nation.

Operation Black Hills Cabin provides an opportunity for the disabled veteran to reacquaint themselves with their family, enrich and enhance their lives, and create lasting memories in a quiet, leisurely environment with little or no cost to them. 

When a service member is permanently injured, the whole family is injured. The entire structure of the family unit is forever changed with the wife and children often becoming the around-the-clock caregivers. Their "family time" takes a back seat to the recovery process. Operation Black Hills Cabin offers quality time - whether it is time spent on an outing such as visiting the patriotic ambiance at Mount Rushmore or sharing quiet times on the deck watching the abundant wildlife of the Black Hills. Their one-week respite in a 1,200 square foot, 3-bedroom, 2-bathroom, fully furnished cabin with fully handicap accessible features--includes no television or computer; only board games, puzzles, playing cards, and outdoor games that families can enjoy together. In addition, they are provided with coupons for free meals, free admission to many popular Black Hills attractions and other recreational opportunities due to the generosity of our many partners. They are able to enjoy as many, or as few, activities as they want, or as their injuries allow. These families cannot bear the burden of all the planning or expense to put together an outing such as this. Operation Black Hills Cabin offers them the opportunity to reconnect, have some fun and create priceless memories of their quality time together.

Also, please spread the word about this wonderful cabin.

Robin L. Dell Fansler

South Dakota State Society DAR Regent, 2019-2022