Theinert ranch plans unveiled

COURTESY ART | An architect’s rendering of a retreat house for veterans and their families slated for construction in New Mexico in honor of First Lieutenant Joseph J. Theinert.

Organizers of Strongpoint Theinert, a planned rest stop for returning troops and their families and Gold Star families — who have lost loved ones at war — have unveiled an architect’s drawing of the ranch to be built in Magdalena, New Mexico.

The ranch is to be on property donated by Frank and Chrystyna Kestler of Shelter Island to honor First Lieutenant Joseph J. Theinert, Ms. Kestler’s son and Dr. Kestler’s stepson, who died in Afghanistan in 2010, protecting his troops from explosive devices.

The intent of the ranch is to enable veterans to reintegrate, reconnect and plan their futures after returning home from war, according to organizer Matt Rohde, who is working with the Theinert’s on the development.

It’s estimated that the ranch will cost about $4 million to develop and staff in the initial years. The aim is to have the the ranch opened by June 4, 2014, four years to the day of Lt. Theinert’s death, according to his mother.

Contributions to the Joseph J. Theinert Memorial Fund for either the ranch or ongoing scholarships can be made at Contributions are tax-deductible, Ms. Kestler said.

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