Test drives Friday to help construct veterans’ homes

By ALLEN MINCEY Banner Staff Writer
Posted 11/5/16

Don Ledford Automotive Center hopes to raise $10,000 to help the Building for America’s Bravest organization construct “smart homes” for this nation’s most severely injured service …

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Test drives Friday to help construct veterans’ homes


Don Ledford Automotive Center hopes to raise $10,000 to help the Building for America’s Bravest organization construct “smart homes” for this nation’s most severely injured service members.

The car dealership will be involved in providing test drives in GMC vehicles on Friday, Nov. 11, at the Bradley Square Mall, and if 500 or more test drives take place, GM will donate $10,000 to the program.

It is appropriate that the test drives occur on Veteran’s Day, as those who benefit will be United States armed forces veterans.

“We need to remember that we would not be the free country that we are if it wasn’t for our veterans who served our country,” said Debbie Ledford Melton of Don Ledford Automotive. “We want to help them, and we are glad that GM wants to help, too.”

Don Ledford Automotive has been successful in three previous test drive promotions, with all three local high schools receiving at least $10,000 for hosting the test drives. The most recent test drives were held at Walker Valley High School, and reportedly set a national record for the most test drives in one day.

“Let’s reach that 500 or more test drives and help our veterans,” Melton said.

The funds raised for the program help build custom-designed, specially adapted “smart homes” for the nation’s most catastrophically injured military service members.

The Building for America’s Bravest program is a part of the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation, which was named after a New York City firefighter who sacrificed his life as a first responder on Sept. 11, 2001, the day the Twin Towers were destroyed in a terrorist attack against America.

These “smart homes” help restore independence and improve the quality of life for this nation’s most catastrophically injured service members, many of which have lost limbs during their time in the armed forces.

“We need to remember these brave men and women, and if we can help by raising money through these test drives, we want to be involved, and we hope you will too,” Melton said.

The test drives will be from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Veteran’s Day, and will be located between Belk and Dunham’s on the side of the mall closest to Don Ledford Automotive.

Volunteers will be on site to ride along with those taking the test drives, and information on how to learn more about the foundation will be available also.

Anyone wishing to participate in the test drives must be 21 years of age or older, have a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance.

No purchase is necessary, but if anyone wishes to learn more about the vehicles he or she has driven, there will also be representatives from the Don Ledford Automotive sales department at the site.

She said that all three high schools will also participate in the test drives as volunteers who will ride along with the partipants or help to register the drivers.

Melton said that it will only take a few minutes to participate in the test drives, but it will be time well spent as it will help those who don’t ask for help, the disabled veterans of this nation, but need that assistance.

Go to http://tunnel2towers. org/stephens-story/ to find out more about Stephen Siller’s foundation and about Siller himself.

“And if you are a veteran taking the test drive, please let us know. We want to thank you and let you know how much we appreciate all you have done for our country with your service,” Melton added.


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