Gorgeous property sold before we could raise funding.



Waterwood R&R  Rest & Relaxation Resort for Veterans, Family & Friends. 

Serene R&R destination for all honorably discharged veterans, family & friends with special consideration for gold star wives, sons, daughters & their families.  


Follow us on Facebook.  Like & Share with friends to spread this message.  We might get lucky and pull this off. 

This veterans benefit is a LONG SHOT but visions can become reality. $9,500,000 will work wonders for someone who is filthy rich and needing a creative tax deduction. Show this to your billionaire friends or big corporations. Send us your email at the bottom of this page. 

We are tackling this large(for us) project with the idea it all goes to benefit vets.  I AM asking you to help me drum up public support by liking and sharing the idea with your friends.  This project is just getting started so we won't be bugging you with emails without good reason.​  I AM asking you to help me drum up public support by liking and sharing the idea with your friends. Sharing on Facebook works best for now.

The Spirit of freedom foundation

21900 Addington Blvd. #104

Cleveland OH 44116




~~~~~~~~ Work in Process Document for Waterwood R&R follows ~~~~~~~~

Rest & Relaxation Resort for Veterans, Family & Friends

Serene R&R destination for veterans, family & friends with special consideration for gold star wives, sons, daughters & their families.

Executive Summary


This project involves acquiring the 160 acre Waterwood Estate on the shores of Lake Erie. The property has a remarkable history and immense potential for repurposing. Here is the latest video describing the property: https://vimeo.com/301891203


Our intention is to repurpose the Waterwood Estate into Waterwood R&R (Rest & Relaxation), a facility to help military veterans and their families adjust to civilian life as they recover from issues of health related to military service. Feasibility studies may suggest other mission alternatives.

Because the Waterwood Estate is currently listed for sale, our immediate requirement is for a partner willing to finance up to a total of $10 million dollars over two years to cover the purchase, maintenance, costs associated with converting the existing facility and miscellaneous expenses and fees. Any combination of financing options such as loans, grants and donations will secure property ownership. Two years will enable detailed planning for budgets, future building and services development.


Many of America's military veterans and families lives have been severely impacted by physical and emotional wounds suffered in service to our country.

Being away from home and family in a high-stress environment often leads to other issues such as Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome(PTSD) for example. PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can be triggered in anyone who experiences a traumatic or life-threatening event. Loss of limbs, burns, blindness and a myriad of other physical issues require ongoing attention.

Waterwood R&R could serve as somewhat of a halfway house rather than a permanent home as veterans prepare their return to civilian life. Recovering veterans, their families and friends would look forward to visiting Waterwood R&R as a reward for their commitment to the recovery challenges. Gold Star widows and families would be accorded special consideration.


Amenities - Present and Projected - 

The Waterwood Estate was built using a series of pods. Ecologically friendly, pre-fab, accommodation pods (perhaps self-contained micro homes) could be the answer for temporary stay add-on housing for veterans. Some of the existing 37 room(more or less) living area could be converted to special needs use inclusive of accommodations for visiting dignitaries, out-of-town consultants and contractors.

Many rooms can easily accommodate scheduled personal needs services via a wi-fi network. A barber shop, post exchange style shopping, podiatry, dental and doctor's offices as well as family gathering areas and private meeting rooms would be converted as existing rooms are repurposed (modified) to a specific service.

Local volunteers and contractors would staff each service area as needed.

With plenty of acreage available for further development, family housing, hotel, motel accommodations or some variation would work for families for short or long term. visits.

Several nearby local golf courses could be partnered with for fundraising tournaments including Sawmill Creek which sits on a 235-acre site on Sawmill Creek/Lake Erie. This relaxed resort is adjacent to Sheldon Marsh Nature Preserve 7.2 miles from the amusement parks at Cedar Point and about 10 miles west of Waterwood so family accommodations are available and nearby.

A van would transport veterans to medical facilities and many nearby attractions.

A FAA certified heliport is onsite for emergencies, sightseeing and other services.

Of course, all features of the property would be connectivity equipped for maximum productivity. Satellite communication will be available as guests experience Lake Erie in the safest way possible.

The recreational benefits are:

Indoor: Therapy pools or hot tubs, sauna, lap pool, billiards, ping pong, cooking, music, table games in a serene environment adds to the recovery experience.

A restaurant/community room could be added onsite to serve as a gathering place for developing a sense of camaraderie.  An exercise facility is a necessity if not in place now. Perhaps even a gym at some point.

Outdoor: Water sports include excellent Lake Erie fishing, sailing, boating with access to many offsite locations such as Cedar Point, Put-In-Bay, golf and major league sports.  The 100 acre parcel could be developed into an 18 hole golf course and used to support Waterwood R&R via golf tournaments although three golf courses are nearby.

The remaining 60 acres could easily contain miniature golf.  Walking and running paths are in place.  In the summer, lawn concerts such as those performed at Blossom Music Center is an attractive possibility. Most winter sports such as ice skating, sledding and cross country skiing would be available on site.

The pod building concept seems ideal for incrementally building out from the central facility. Specialized treatment centers, urgent care, medical offices and other pertinent needs could be accommodated.  Indeed, many pods could be built as 'cabins' to house visiting families.

Animals have a place here too.  Therapy dogs are popular.  Occupational guidance would help if career choices are in play for veterans.  Onsite training for veterans working with pets is proven to be therapeutic.

Ideally, with significant financial support Waterwood R&R could eventually operate ala St.Jude Children's Hospital, Shriners Burn Hospitals or Ronald McDonald House. An alternative possibility is a resort style for-profit operation.  The Lake Erie shoreline is replete with entertainment venues.

Implementation plan

Part One of this project requires an architectural rendering for the purpose of illustrating our vision. Simon Jacobsen of Jacobsen Architecture, the original architect, endorsed our repurposing vision suggesting such a conversion would likely be reasonably inexpensive depending on the scope.  Once Part One funding is secured, we will engage an architectural firm after the Seller agrees to a mutually acceptable real estate purchase agreement.   The estimated cost is $15,000 to $20,000.

Part Two will involve financial and legal consultants engaged to delineate and recommend options as well as a community impact study.   We need to determine the financial viability of converting the Waterwood Estate from a part time luxurious family retreat into a functional rehabilitation facility while examining income and expense considerations related to non-profit vs. for-profit ownership or a combination of both. Additionally, the architectural rendering could be enhanced.  A Waterwood R&R Master Plan would address the features of a fully developed 160 acres.

Part Three involves implementation of recommendations based on availability of funding.  We will immediately begin pursuing all means at our disposal to raise funding  including crowdfunding platforms, corporate and government grants as well as private donations.  Private equity or venture capital is possible, if necessary, depending on what entity assumes responsibility for ongoing operations.

Assuming we can achieve a purchase agreement, the budget prior to property alterations would be $9,444,500 which would include Part One and Part Two studies, estate purchase price(5.7 million USD), two years maintenance costs(2 million USD), architectural planning for future development, miscellaneous costs, various fees and fundraising expenses.]

Two years will enable us to develop and implement plans to promote and develop Waterwood R&R and initiate services to veterans.  We will focus on providing ways to assure future viability and fund ongoing costs of operation.  Heavily dependent on volunteers and professional fundraising, future efforts will be directed toward obtaining private and government grants.

Part Four involves ongoing operations the funding of which is expected to come from grants and donation campaigns featuring a celebrity spokesperson with Gary Sinise as  likely because of his commitment to veterans causes .  In the unlikely event Waterwood cannot be economically repurposed to best serve veterans, Plan B involves operation as a public entertainment venue and vacation destination.


The primary risk to acquiring on the Waterwood Estate is availability.  It is currently on the market at a favorable price and could be sold before we can do a piece by piece financing.

The Waterwood Estate has had several owners over the years and is currently being offered by CBRE Group. Based in Los Angeles, CBRE Group has been around for over a century and is the world’s largest firm specializing in commercial real estate services and investment.  The current owners acquired ownership by way of inheritance using it as a vacation home for twelve to fourteen days each year. CBRE had several offers fall through because buyers could not (or would not?) complete the sale.

Community support from individual volunteers, foundations, local businesses and corporations is not assured but can be reasonably expected when energetic volunteers fortified with a great story to tell are organized.

Assuming we can achieve ownership of the Waterwood Estate, the downside risk could result in failure of the entire concept.   Financing at the $10 million level in such an event would be mitigated by the value of acreage and physical plant estimated at the current valuation of approximately $5 million.

In recent years lakefront real estate has seen significant increases in value.  Many older homes have been torn down and replaced with new structures each selling for upwards of a million dollars.


Essentially, we believe two years will be enough time to determine long term viability.  We will carefully manage operating costs as we phase in services and plan cost effective improvements.

Funding Ongoing Operations

Favorable treatment by the Veterans Administration is possible because Waterwood R&R would be servicing the needs of veterans and their families possibly at a lower cost while providing services generally unavailable at all VA facilities. Some VA programs to be considered would include: 


The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services is likely to favor the project because Waterwood R&R services would add value to their Foundations Recovery Network (FNR).  Veterans and Military Family Health: Service members and veterans face some different health issues from civilians. Their families also face some unique challenges. Families may have to cope:

  • Separation from their loved ones

  • Anxiety over loved ones' safety in combat zones

  • Illnesses and injuries from combat, including disabilities

  • Mental health effects of military service, including post-traumatic stress disorder

  • Family issues such as disruptions in parenting

  • Caregiver stress


Both federal entities named above accept grant applications.  Besides myself, I have several associates(volunteers) with considerable expertise in writing grant applications and gaining approvals for many millions of dollars.  An important part is determining where Waterwood R&R best fits into the many government agency services available to veterans and their families, if at all.


This Northeastern Ohio opportunity would greatly enhance the local community and have an important impact throughout society.  Recently announced was repurposing the closed General Motors Lordstown Ohio Chevrolet Plant into a new operation geared to producing electric trucks.  Same idea here.  Repurposing the Waterwood Estate from a short stay private residence into a full-time facility providing help for deserving veterans looks to be a no-brainer.


Waterwood was built by the inventor of drop ceilings. The story is covered here: https://www.businessinsider.com/lake-erie-house-photos-2011-10.  An Internet search yields many more sources.  As I recall, Waterwood was built in 1990 at a cost of about $35 million more or less.


The asking price to acquire the 160 acre Waterwood property is currently set at $5.7 million with annual maintenance costs of about one million dollars less about $100,000 annual real estate taxes.  The local economy is likely to recoup the loss of tax revenue should the Spirit of Freedom Foundation convert to 501(c)(3) status.

Spirit of Freedom Foundation

I believe this project will generate enormous goodwill among Ohioans as well as nationally.

As a Marine Corps veteran I cannot think of a better time to start writing about this project than on the 244th Marine Corps Birthday on November 10, Veterans Day on November 11 with a campaign launch during the Thanksgiving holidays.

My one person non-profit private Spirit of Freedom Foundation is not currently a 501(c)(3) and does not have the resources to repurpose a multi-million dollar property. We can remain a private foundation, apply for IRS 501(c)(3) designation or set up a C corporation or LLC.

Ownership of Waterwood R&R  is dependent upon legal and accounting advice as well as any provisions incorporated in a Real Estate Purchase Agreement.

As Executive Director of the Spirit of Freedom Foundation I do everything including promoting small charitable projects (usually funded personally), building and maintaining our websites, supporting day to day activities by selling off collectibles to support my favorite causes. 

The foregoing is intended to express my vision and the reason for a renderings and feasibility studies. In the meantime, I will pursue various funding sources capable of funding the entire project via grants pending the feasibility study. An investing angel willing to fund the project would accelerate project completion.

My personal credo comes from Harry S Truman who is first credited with saying, "It is amazing what you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit."

In short, any reader here with the financial wherewithal to purchase, maintain and fully finance this project beyond the purchase price is encouraged to buy the Waterwood Estate to help veterans.

If not, c'est la vie.

Questions about this project? Ask. Email Me:  rodmillerusa@sbcglobal.net

Share with someone you know who has five to ten million dollars to lend or donate.

2020 Project #2 is being launched now 4/4/2020 update here later.

See it HERE: