SEATTLE – Ford Motor Company donated seven Ford Flex utility vehicles to the Disabled American Veterans Charity (DAV), extending its strong relationship with the vital organization that has assisted disabled military veterans for 93 years.
Ford donated a Flex utility vehicle to the VA Puget Sound Health Care System that will help veterans travel to and from their hospital appointments. This vehicle will become part of the DAV Transportation Network that enlists volunteer drivers to take sick and disabled veterans to the Seattle Division and American Lake Division VA Medical Centers.
In addition to Seattle, donated vehicles were also deployed to DAV locations in Little Rock, Arkansas; Iowa City, Iowa; Iron Mountain, Michigan; Omaha, Nebraska; Portland, Oregon; and Salt Lake City, Utah. Since 1996, Ford has donated 199 vehicles to the DAV fleet.
“We are extremely proud of our long partnership with Ford Motor Company,” said John Kleindienst, DAV National Director of Voluntary Services. “We’re grateful for Ford’s continued to support in helping us empower veterans to lead high-quality lives with access to the full range of benefits available to them.”
Ford Motor Company and the DAV have been working together to help the nation’s wounded military veterans since Henry Ford organized a cross-country caravan of 50 Model T vehicles to take disabled veterans to the 1922 DAV national convention in San Francisco. The company’s support for veterans lives on and continues to evolve to meet these heroes’ changing needs. Earlier this year, Ford collaborated with National Veterans Transition Services, Inc. on the Freedom’s Sisters REBOOT Workshop that helped women veterans address the unique challenges they face transitioning out of the military.
“Transportation and community service are two important areas where Ford excels,” Larry Gregerson said in a press release about the program. He is program manager of Operation Better World Northwest, a division of the Ford Motor Company Fund.
“We are proud to be able to help these heroes of freedom get the critical services they need to make their lives better.”
Ford Fund also sponsors Honor Flights to transport World War II veterans to the National World War II Memorial in Washington, D.C. and featured a special salute to the nation’s military called Focus on Freedom during this year’s Ford Fireworks in Detroit. The event included a special reception for veterans and their families, plus a thrilling flyover by vintage World War II-era planes.
Since 1974, Ford and Ford Fund have provided nearly $9.3 million to veterans’ organizations. Additionally, Ford employs more than 7,000 veterans plus hundreds of active military personnel, reservists and guardsmen.