Contact: Gary Peterson
One Community Auto Adds Five Charities
to Its Vehicle Donation Management Service
Handles all aspects of donating and selling donated vehicles.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Albuquerque NM, November 23, 2020. One Community Auto, a local used car dealer with a mission to support our community, today announced that OCA added five new non-profits to its list of charities, now serving 53 area non-profits for which it manages all aspects of vehicle donations. In the seven years since the program began, OCA has helped local charities raise over $1 million to help support their various missions, and, even in the midst of the pandemic the numbers are still growing.
The recently contracted charities are:
- • Veterans Integration Centers – The VIC began 15 years ago as a program to bring
- Veterans all over New Mexico from the streets to a place for healing and creating new lives. Homeless and home-insecure Veterans are housed in the VIC’s Transitional Living Facility in the Southeast Heights, where they receive a number of services—medical, psychological, working on job skills and interpersonal skills that will help them create a new stable and productive life. VIC moves those Veterans who are ready into permanent housing and continues to work with them to build confidence in their ability to thrive. Headquartered in Albuquerque and Alamogordo, VIC also runs a weekday shuttle downtown to transport all who need help to various organizations and services for the homeless. VIC also provides a food bank in their NE Heights Central Avenue location for those in need of nutritious food. Learn more at www.nmvic.org
- • The Museum of the American Military Family – With the message of “We Also Serve”, MAMF, temporarily located in Tijeras, NM, shares the stories of military families from all branches of our Armed Services whose great sacrifices support our strong military. The Museum, visited by people throughout the U.S. and other countries, focuses on the unique lives of families that may move numerous times as their active-duty military family member is transferred from base to base. And, on those who remain behind when family members are deployed to combat zones, having to manage family life without their spouses’ presence. The Museum develops numerous programs throughout the year to continue sharing stories, experiences and challenges met by military families serving worldwide. www.militaryfamilymuseum.org
- • Next Step Ministries – Their mission is to provide help and hope to men who have taken steps to move from a damaged or broken life to a life that glorifies God. The men served by Next Step Ministries are, first, men who have accepted Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. Second, they are men who have stumbled in their lives, resulting in homelessness, substance abuse, incarceration, broken relationships, or perhaps long-term unemployment, but who have taken significant steps toward stability and restoration. Learn more athttps://www.nextstepnm.com/
- • IncredAble Adaptive MMA – A non-profit associated with Jackson-Wink MMA, its mission is to create and provide opportunities in MMA for youths and teens with physical and environmental/at risk challenges. They help these young people who are often overlooked train in and excel in the sport of MMA. This focused training helps empower clients to be able to defend themselves, as well as to become more fit and build physical strength. Learn more at www.incredableadaptivemma.org
- • FIFABQ – Food is Free Albuquerque—A nonprofit that encourages the social empowerment through the growing and sharing of fresh food. Through their efforts of gleaning local backyard trees and privately owned orchards, they feed hundreds of New Mexicans in need. Food is Free is a global movement started in Austin Texas as front-yard gardens. The Albuquerque chapter was started in 2014 by two woman looking to make preserves for their own families. Through this act they discovered a hidden abundance of fruit trees and took this newfound information to begin giving food away. Since then FIFABQ has grown multiple programs, providing unique ways to bring fresh healthy food to citizens in Albuquerque and beyond. Every action driven by their motto
- “Fresh Food is a human right”. Visit their website at www.fifabq.org
OCA makes the entire vehicle donation experience so incredibly simple. Make one call, that’s all a donor needs to do! OCA will…
- • Pick up the donated vehicle
- • Prepare all legal paperwork
- • Give the donor proof of the donation
- • When the vehicle sells, send a donation letter for filing taxes
OCA owner Major Gary Peterson, USAF, Ret., completed his military mission in hot spots in the Middle East and served at the Pentagon prior to retiring and opening a used car dealership committed to helping support his community. In the seven years OCA has been managing vehicle donations for non-profits, the number charities he serves has grown from a handful to over 50.
In order to move the sale of donated vehicles that his company repairs and refurbishes more quickly, Peterson established Route 66 Auctions and is holding monthly online auctions, www.rt66auctions.hibid.com, to ensure that monies are available to the non-profits much earlier than waiting for car lot sales. For more information about the process and the many charities served by One Community Auto please visit https://www.onecommunityauto.com/services
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One Community Auto, “Where everybody wins!”, is located at 300 Wyoming SE, Albuquerque NM 87123. Call 505-379-3432 for more information on vehicle donations.
If you’re planning to visit us, please make an appointment 24 hours in advance, and if you can’t come visit in person, check out our blogs and podcasts or follow us on Facebook. View one of our many blogs, like https://weservedtoo.wordpress.com, our podcast at https://militaryfamilymuseum.podbean.com and our website, https://militaryfamilymuseum.org
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One of the things military families tell me when they visit our museum is that they miss the life they left behind when they left the service. That life, of course, means different things to different people, but sometimes it’s quite clear that they are looking back nostalgically to what author and historian Mary Edwards Wertsch calls “life inside the fortress.”
The “fortress” refers to a military installation where families work, live, shop, and play inside the installation’s perimeter fence. Living and working in such close proximity creates a very tight-knit community. While this community is comprised of very different individuals with very different perspectives, these individuals are bound together by a common purpose: the mission.
On an installation, at 5 o’clock pm, everything comes to a stop as the National Anthem plays over a loudspeaker. Children stop playing, cars come to a halt, and anyone walking outside comes to a stop. At 5 o’clock everyone faces the flag and places their hand over their heart or, if in uniform, salutes. The National Anthem also is played in installation movie theatres, and the audience stands at attention prior to viewing the feature.
There is a sense of pride and duty that comes with being a military family, and living on an installation requires a modicum of discipline: yards must be kept to a certain standard, children mustn’t run amok, rules must be followed.
One Air Force daughter says, “I grew up knowing that I was a child ambassador representing the United States, the Air Force, and my immediate family.While living overseas and learning new customs and meeting new people, I represented the best of the United States.”
I grew up in Germany knowing that what I did reflected on my parents. If I did something wrong, people would tell them, and there would be Dire Consequences. Luckily, I was a pretty good kid, and the only dire consequence which happened was after my father received a letter from the Post Commander reprimanding him for allowing me to have 36 overdue library books. I was banned from the library for six months.
All people who have left this lifestyle, whether they liked it or not, have stories to tell.
Spouses often reminisce about living in base housing. They acknowledge the lack of privacy, but they also point out the great connections they built. Living in stairwells or in the close quarters of a military installation, means that the adults keep an eye on the kids, everybody knows everybody’s business, and one can’t really “escape the busyness” of the military tempo.
Shannon remembers life on Holloman Air Base during the Vietnam War. She describes when a jeep pulled up to her quarters. “I watched from the window as they walked up to the house. They spoke to my mom for a few minutes and then mom came in. I remember holding my breath (we knew what this meant). She said, ‘I need you and your brother to go next door and stay there until I get back.’ We didn’t ask questions, we went…It wasn’t until years later that mom talked about it though. She told me that she was going to the houses of wives that were being told their husbands were not coming back. She hated the task, but she said she would be damned if those women were going to face that time alone.”
Even as times have changed, the conflicts are different, more spouses work, and life doesn’t solely revolve around the installation, military spouses still look out for one another.
Sometimes it’s in social media groups like Facebook, where someone might post “We’re moving to base soon, which pediatric dentist in town do you recommend”? Or, “There are two black-and-white dogs running down my street, does anyone know who they belong to?” Or, “Can anyone look after my toddler while I run to the commissary for an hour?”
As our lives get busier and increasingly more isolated, we don’t have as much face-to-face contact with our neighbors as we used to, and small social media groups can be very helpful in bringing people together, building connections, and sharing information.
Adult brats often say that they can sense another brat, even in a crowd of strangers. Brats are drawn to each other because of their shared experiences. That happened to me just the other day at an East Mountain Regional Chamber of Commerce meeting. As I introduced myself to my tablemates, the man sitting to my left mentioned he was a brat. A little later, a woman came up to me and told me she was a brat as well. Instant community!
As military families, we are used to moving into and out of communities each time we PCS (move) even while yearning for a permanent “home” someday. “Home is where the heart is” is an oft-quoted platitude–people are the heart of our communities, and communities are what draw people to them when they’re deciding where to settle.
Our neighborhood is small, and when my husband and I are out walking our dog, our neighbors wave as they drive by. We recently got together for a neighborhood New Year’s Eve party, and via Facebook and cell phone, we keep each other informed if we notice anything out-of-the ordinary. It’s nice to have human connections.
Small communities are special. That’s one reason we chose to locate our museum in Tijeras—next to Molly’s Bar, because we wanted to be a part of a small, lively town and part of Route 66’s continuing history. We love the mountains, the folks who come and go from Molly’s, the tourists who are cruising the Mother Road, and the East Mountains’ unique vibe. People are neighborly here; they have time to visit a little. They offer to help someone out. They leave little painted rocks on our museum doorstep.
We hope our museum will become an increasingly important part of the business and tourism ecosystem here, and that as we grow and expand, we can meet many more of our East Mountain neighbors. Stop by the museum for a bit, let’s share a story and get to know each other!
(Circe Olson Woessner is the executive director of the Museum of the American Military Family & Learning Center. The museum collects and preserves the stories of military families of all branches and generations. The museum is located at 546B Highway 333, Tijeras.)
It’s shaping up to be another literary year for MAMF!
Our writer-in-residence emeritus Paul Zolbrod will be leading our monthly Book Club discussions and working on some local writing projects…
…our 2019 writer-in-residence ( drumroll please) Military Brat Lauren Mosher will be starting with MAMF in January. She’s going to put out a call for stories for this year’s anthology: My Hero Dog: Stories on How Our Dogs Have Helped Shaped Who We Are”
So…if you have an amazing dog and want to share a story, we would love to include it in the book!
MAMF Artist in residence Lora Beldon is working on our play in collaboration with several theatrical and veterans groups in Richmond, and we will be compiling stories for a companion anthology to SHOUT! It’s called Still SHOUTING!
Director Circe Olson Woessner will be working on a book about the troops and their families stationed along both sides of the East-West border in Cold War, Germany.
So…another busy year for the writers, artists and poets of MAMF.
Proceeds from all our book sales help the museum’s operating funds—so we can continue to bring programming and exhibits to the public!
Looking forward to hearing from you as we start 2019 with a clicking of keyboards!