Madison,
21
December
2015
|
10:00 PM
America/Chicago

American Family Insurance and Gates Collision Centers team up to present Marine and Iraq war veteran refurbished vehicle through Recycled Rides program

Summary

B.J. Ganem, a U.S. Marine and Iraq war veteran, received a special holiday gift today as the recipient of a 2007 Ford F150 truck, donated by American Family Insurance and refurbished by Gates Collision Centers through the Recycled Rides program.

B.J. Ganem, a U.S. Marine and Iraq war veteran, received a special holiday gift today as the recipient of a 2007 Ford F150 truck, donated by American Family Insurance and refurbished by Gates Collision Centers through the Recycled Rides program.

American Family partners with local auto body shops, in this case Gates Collision Centers, to donate vehicles declared a total loss. When a car is declared a total loss, American Family pays the customer for the actual cash value of the vehicle before the loss, and usually takes possession of the vehicle and can sell it through a salvage vendor. With the Recycled Rides program, rather than take the salvage proceeds, American Family donates the vehicles and a local auto body shop donates its services to repair them. Other vendors also offer parts and services. The vehicles are repaired to industry standards and meet state safety requirements. The vehicle is then donated to a worthy recipient who meets the following criteria: financial need, a valid driver’s license, proof of income/employment, a safe driving record, no current working vehicle, and being able to insure and maintain the vehicle.

B.J. joined the Marine Corps in 1996 and served in various capacities while also working in sales for Kraft Foods. In 2004 he was called to serve in Iraq and in November 2004, the vehicle B.J. was driving was struck by an IED (improvised explosive device). B.J. lost his lower left leg, suffered a traumatic brain injury and various other wounds. B.J. currently works with a new Marine Semper Fi program called Veteran 2 Veteran. V2 leaders such as B.J. help service members understand and gain access to various programs that enrich their lives.

B.J. married Sarah in 2011, and they welcomed their first child together in August 2013 and a second in August of this year. They live in Reedsburg, Wisconsin, with his two children from his first marriage. B.J. graduated from Saint Leo University in 2012 with a bachelor of science degree in Psychology and is working on a master’s degree in Social Work.

With the support and guidance of the Semper Fi Fund (SFF) and Team Semper Fi (TSF), B.J. has competed in three marathons (hand cycle), learned to snow board, competed in the 2012 Marine Corps trials, and gained confidence through exposure to adaptive sports via SFF/TSF. Today, B.J. continually looks for new ways to mentally and physically challenge himself.

Representatives from American Family and Gates Collision Centers presented the keys to a very grateful B.J. and his family at a presentation on Monday, Dec. 21.

 

About American Family Insurance

Madison, Wis.– based American Family Insurance is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company and ranks 358th on the Fortune 500 list. The company sells American Family-brand products, including auto, homeowners, life, business and farm/ranch insurance, through its exclusive agents in 19 states. American Family affiliates (The General, Homesite and AssureStart) also provide options for consumers who want to manage their insurance matters directly over the Internet or by phone. Web: www.amfam.com; Facebook: www.facebook.com/amfam; Twitter: www.twitter.com/amfam. Google+ plus.google.com/+amfam/

 

Photo: Mark Follman, American Family Insurance and Troy Gates, Gates Collision Centers, present the keys to a Ford F150 Truck to B.J. Ganem and his family.