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Along with their devotion to one another, Marty Weber and his longtime partner Jeff Poissant shared many things in common. They owned a business together. Both loved nature. Both served in the U.S. Army, and both experienced firsthand some of the challenges military veterans can face.
When Poissant passed away four years ago from cancer, Weber could think of no better way to honor their 30-year union than by supporting military veterans in need.
In order to make that happen, Weber is donating 36 rural acres bordering New Jersey’s Pinelands National Reserve to be used as a rehabilitation center/retreat for mental illness and addiction. Its name? Jeff’s Camp.
Given that Weber turned down a $3 million dollar offer for the property, this is an extremely generous gesture.
Working with two already-established homeless outreach programs—Just Believe and New Life Addiction Services—Jeff’s Camp will feature an 8,000-square-foot facility incorporating a thrift store and a sober living residence providing treatment, rehabilitation, and vocational training—all in a serene, wooded setting.
“While (New Life) is working with them on the medical side, we can work on the rehabilitative/vocation side, getting them back into society, touching people, getting back into that public eye, and getting people what they need. That’s what the store is going to do,” Just Believe director Paul Hulse told NJ.com.
In an impromptu May 27 ceremony, Weber signed a letter of intent to deed over the land on which Jeff’s Camp will be built. Watching was a group that included New Jersey Congressman Andy Kim—whom Weber once ran against as a candidate for New Jersey’s 3rd district seat.
Obviously, there are no hard feelings.
“If ever there was an issue that tries to unite our country it would be about supporting our veterans,” Kim told NJ.com. “So this is something where it should be all hands on deck. It should be a no-brainer to everybody.”
A no-brainer perhaps, and a fitting testament to two veterans who loved one another and their country.
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