Camp Pendleton beach cottages revamped, redesigned with wounded warriors in mind

Cottages are now ADA friendly

CAMP PENDLETON - The cottages on the bluffs overlooking Camp Pendleton's beach recreation area have been revamped and redesigned with wounded warriors in mind.

The cottages have stood for more than 30 years and were in dire need of attention.  

"They were pretty beat up," said John Preston, the facilities manager at the recreation area.

Along came donors like Mary Ann Blair, whose generosity not only made it possible to refurbish the cottages, but also make them ADA friendly.  

"Fabulous … just fabulous," Blair said as she got her first look at the cottages, which can now accommodate wounded warriors.  

Preston said, "The bathrooms are wider and have grab bars, plus the areas under the sinks can fit a wheelchair under them."

Blair said she wanted to make a contribution in honor of her father and uncles who fought in World War II.

She added, "I had a son-in-law who just passed away and he was in a chair for 35 after a motorcycle accident."

The cottages are available for rent to any active duty or retiree, but for wounded warriors, it is a chance to get away with the family.  

"For us, we're never going to be normal, but it's great to have something like this to make us feel as normal as we can get," said Sgt. John Dickerson, who is dealing with a combat injury to his leg.

Four of seven cottages have been completed. The goal is to raise the money to redo all 29.

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