A Victory for Veterans in Daytona

A Victory for Veterans in Daytona

NASCAR Racing Experience and NABC Recycled Rides program join together to donate a refurbished vehicle to a deserving Daytona-area veteran.

The National Auto Body Council (NABC), along with GEICO and Daytona Toyota Certified Collision Center, recently donated a refurbished vehicle to Nilsson Garcia, a deserving Daytona-area veteran, via the NABC Recycled Rides program.

NASCAR Racing Experience helped wave the green flag for the event, which took place before the NASCAR Cup race at Daytona International Speedway that evening. GEICO is a NASCAR Premier Partner, and Toyota is an official partner of Daytona International Speedway. NASCAR Racing Experience donated passes for driving school at Daytona International Speedway for Garcia, his mentor from charity partner Soldiers’ Angels, as well as the team from GEICO and Daytona Toyota.

Garcia was presented with a 2015 Ford Escape. Garcia, who served in the U.S. Army from 1991-1995, has been without a vehicle since he had to give one up after losing his job at the beginning of the pandemic. He came to Soldiers’ Angels last year, wanting to serve as a volunteer. He was recruited to serve as an intern for Soldiers’ Angels and has worked extremely hard to meet the internship requirements. He had to either borrow a vehicle or utilize public transportation to get to work.

“This vehicle is such a blessing to me, I’m really just in shock,” said Garcia. “This means the world to me. I just want to be an example for other veterans who are facing challenges that there are people who care and are there to help. Now, I want to pay it forward for someone else.”

Nilsson was also honored as the City Furniture Everyday Hero, and the vehicle was “unveiled” on the big screen at Exploria Stadium that night during pregame before the Orlando City vs. St. Louis Soccer Game.

For Daytona Toyota Certified Collision Center, this is their fifth NABC Recycled Rides vehicle.

“We want to be good community partners and give back to those in need,” said Todd Sindel, collision center manager, Daytona Toyota. “To help a veteran like Nilsson get back on the road with reliable transportation and give back to other veterans is our goal. Thank you to our team here at Daytona Toyota for all their hard work refurbishing this vehicle for him. It’s an honor for us all to participate.”

Additional partners in the presentation included 1-800 Charity Cars and Enterprise.

For more information on Recycled Rides, click here.

You May Also Like

Meet the Auto Body Instructor: Brian Cobb

Brian Cobb, collision repair instructor and department chair at Coastal Carolina Community College, works extremely hard to make inroads with the local industry and is starting to see that there are people who want to work in collision repair.

Brian Cobb is the collision repair instructor and department chair at Coastal Carolina Community College (CCC) in Jacksonville, N.C. He is in his third year instructing a 41-credit hour, one-year diploma course. The school offers programs in non-structural damage, plastic repair, specialty finishes and detailing. In the future, Cobb hopes to expand the program to include night courses focusing on restoration and customization. He’s excited and inspired that most of his students come from Camp Lejeune and a nearby air station.

Idaho Auto Body Shop Builds a Legacy

Family-run CARSTAR Hayden’s goal is to expertly repair cars according to manufacturer standards and create a positive environment while doing it.

Damien Reyna: From Technician to COO of Driven Brands Collision

When Damien Reyna started out as an apprentice technician at CARSTAR Mundelein, he never envisioned a world through his safety glasses where he was leading the entire organization.

Body Shop Brothers Embrace Family-First Mindset

Jeremy and Matt Buller, brothers and owners of three North Dakota Abra Auto Body locations, take a family approach to growing their business with top talent in place.

Rock On, Michael!

Michael Bradshaw, vice president of K & M Collision, was named a Vehicle Care RockStar due to standing up for what he believes in.

Other Posts

NABC Donates Recycled Ride to U.S. Navy Veteran at Wreck Week

The NABC, Allstate and Texas Collision Centers donated a refurbished vehicle to disabled U.S. Navy veteran Demi Sims during Wreck Week June 21-22 in Fort Worth, Texas.

NABC Donates Recycled Ride to Atlanta Veteran

The NABC, GEICO and Gerber Collision & Glass recently donated a refurbished 2019 Jeep Compass to U.S. Army veteran Nikkitris Jones.

NABC Donates Recycled Ride to Needy Milwaukee Man

The NABC, GEICO and Crash Champions West Bend recently donated a refurbished 2019 Buick Envision to a West Bend, Wis. resident.

NABC to Host Third Golf Fundraising Event of 2024

The NABC Changing and Saving Lives Foundation will host the third golf fundraising event of 2024 Sept. 9 at Boone Valley Golf Club in Augusta, Mo.