The Guest House was founded in the early 1990s when two Reno veterans, Chuck Fulkerson and Dick Rhyno, along with their community, realized that veterans and family members were sleeping in their cars while visiting the local Veterans Administration Medical Center. An example of this was a woman from Bishop, Calif. who spent the night in her car with her children. While her veteran husband was in the hospital intensive care unit. She did not know anyone in the Reno/Sparks area who could help with lodging and did not have the financial means to stay in a local motel. Thus began a credo that “never again on our watch” would veterans and their families be without a safe, warm and clean place to stay. The guest house was born.
The Veterans Hospital Foundation was awarded its 501(c)(3) status and the Reno “Spouse House” was opened in 1994. The original 1935 bungalow located at the corner of Locust and Taylor had 3-5 beds and served as the only accommodation of its kind for the next 10 years. In 2002, the organization began operating as “The Veterans Guest House, Inc.” With the help of the community, expansion continued from 12 to the 33 beds a night now offered at our facility built in 2018. The Guest House, in partnership with the community, continues to meet the growing demand for overnight space for veterans in need of medical care coming from rural communities.