VA Long Beach Healthcare System
Putting Green Installed at Blind Rehab Center
Howard Payne, a WWII Veteran who served in the U.S. Army under General Patton, continues to contribute to the community as an advocate for the blind or visually impaired. As a member of the City of Whittier Accessibility Committee, Payne has worked to make intersections in his community more accessible to people with disabled persons. He also serves as member of the Long Beach Blind Rehabilitation Center Alumni Association, Blind Veterans of America Chapter 101, Los Angeles County Para Transit Committee, and American Legion 51. Experiencing visual impairment himself, Payne makes helping others with disabilities a main priority.
Payne participated in the Robert Soltes Jr. OD Blind Rehabilitation Center program (BRC) and quickly became a valuable contributor to this organization. His most recent contribution, as member of the Blind Veterans Association, includes a new putting green, which visually impaired participants can use to learn adaptive golfing techniques to perhaps pick it up for the first time or get back in the game! He hopes to share his passion for golf with as many visually impaired Veterans as possible.
“I started to teach blind putting to Veterans who stopped playing golf or never played golf…now many of these Veterans are playing par three courses,” said Payne.
Long Beach BRC offers blind and visually impaired Veterans an opportunity to learn adaptive skills in the area of daily living, low vision, manual skills, orientation and mobility, recreational therapy, as well as, access to nursing education, social work, and psychology services.