The city of Greenville has been negotiating with the Alabama National Guard in hopes of one day bringing a "super" armory to the Camellia City.
Fort Robert E. Steiner is one of 13 armories that closed in Alabama last November. Since then, the city of Greenville has been looking into ways to bring the armory back home.
Larry Fail was stunned by the announcement last November -- the Greenville National Guard Armory would close its doors after being here for over half a century...
"It was heart dropping because this had been a part of my life since I was a very young man. Since 1972," Said Fail
Fail is a retired master sergeant, who served the guard for 34 years. Twenty-five of them, right here in Greenville. When the facility closed down due to consolidation efforts, it became only a memory -- one he wishes could be a reality again.
But Mayor, Dexter McLendon, says there's a chance for a "super" armory coming to town in the future. "Super" meaning much larger than an armory this size. He says it would fit about 500 people.
"I have shown it to the National Guard Armory and they are very excited about that opportunity. At this time it wouldn't be appropriate," said McLendon when we asked him to disclose the location for the potential armory. "But I can tell you it's a great site and it is an opportunity. This would be one of the biggest things to happen to Greenville if we got the large National Guard armory here."
Since December, the unit has transferred to Montgomery. Fail says it would make life easier and would mean the world to him if they brought a super armory to Greenville.
"To have another National Guard Armory in my city, if there was something in my future that I needed technical help on or information concerning retirement, insurance, or whatever, it would be very nice to be able to just drive out to the armory, meet the people and ask them the questions," Said Fail.
If the new armory becomes a reality, the former National Guard Armory would become the new home for the Greenville Fire Department.