Roane County's veterans want Washington to know they need a VA hospital.
"I've been having to travel six hours to go the VA hospital in Murfreesboro which is a burden on me," said Dr. Ron Higgs, a retired physician in Roane County.
For the second time, hundreds of veterans rallied together Friday in Kingston to show their support of a new hospital.
Dr. Higgs is deeply connected to this fight.
"I'm a patient of the VA hospital and I've spent my entire career at Roane County Medical Center," he said.
The city of Harriman, where RCMC is located, is offering the building to the VA for $1. But so far, no action.
Dr. Higgs is like many others who are tired of driving 170 miles either way to the nearest VA hospitals in Murfreesboro or Johnson City. That's why he's not giving up.
"We're positive we can get this done because it's really, really needed to service the veterans and citizens of this area," Dr. Higgs said.
Local mayors teamed up to get Congressman Chuck Fleischmann (R) and House Veterans Affairs Chairman Representative Jeff Miller (R-FL) to the rally.
They presented the chairman with a 26,000 signature petition to open a hospital in the area.
Both Congressmen toured the recently closed VA clinic in Rockwood and the site the city has offered for a VA hospital Friday.
"We have men and women who are coming back after great service. They have needs. Many times those needs are not met. Let's face it, when a clinic in Rockwood closes down because of lack of staffing that's unacceptable," Congressman Fleischmann who represents District 3 said.
While Miller says he's convinced, he now has the job of convincing the Department of Veterans Affairs.
"It makes sense geographically. Are the numbers here? I don't know. That's something the VA will have to determine," Rep. Miller said. "I think the most important thing by Congressman Fleischmann bringing this to our attention is that we take action quickly so wheels aren't spun for a long time."
Even though it's unclear when, if ever Roane County will get a VA hospital, the congressmen say it's a step in the right direction.
"Anytime that you have total support by the local community, it's a big deal," said Rep. Miller.
Officials say there are 80,000 veterans in 12 counties who would benefit from a VA hospital in Roane County.