November 11 2015

Celebrating Veterans Day with the Story of a Special Safelite Customer


Tom Feeney, Safelite® President and CEO
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Today is an important day for our country – Veterans Day. It’s the day we take time to honor all who have served this great nation we live in. Have you ever wondered how this day came about?

I recently came across an article on “The Business Journals” from contributing writer Harvey Mackay that explains the history of Veterans Day. What stood out to me in the article is why November 11 was chosen as the day we honor our Veterans. It is symbolic because the 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month of 1918 marked the end of World War I.

When I read the article, it reinforced my gratitude for the 21 million men and women who have defended our country and the freedoms we have today. It makes me proud of those close to me who have served, including my father and father-in-law who served in World War II and my older brother who served in the Army. And of course there’s the numerous men and women we work alongside here at Safelite every day – I’m grateful for their service and protection of our freedoms.

I’d like to thank all of you for recognizing how important Veterans are to our country. I’m so proud of the programs and actions we take on a daily basis to salute Veterans. Whether it’s our “Valor Coin” program, our Safelite in the Service series saluting Safelite associates for their service or our recent designation as a 2016 Military Friendly® Employer, it all shows just how People Powered we truly are.

Here’s one special story I’d like to share today: the story of wounded warrior David Bigbey.

Shawn

In September, the Phoenix market was contacted by Team Rubicon, a nonprofit that supports Veterans, seeking help for Bigbey who served onboard USS Abraham Lincoln CVN72 from 2007 – 2011.He was injured and sustained a huge hiatal hernia that has required seven surgeries.

Bigbey, who was on the brink of homelessness, had his car vandalized and windows destroyed. Due to paperwork glitches, his VA compensation was reduced leading to his eviction. The VFW was able to assist with a hotel for a week, but not long enough to cover him until his benefits kick back in. Essentially homeless, he’s trying to make ends meet in a motel over the next several weeks.

VandalizedCar

Upon receiving this request, District Manager Shawn McClain, a Navy Veteran himself, and his team quickly sprang into action, completing service in just two days. They replaced all the glass and purchased a new tire and air compressor to make the car operational.

Their generosity did not stop there. McClain and Regional Vice President Mike Jalbert listened to Bigbey’s story to find other ways to help. Mike gave him $200 to cover his basic needs in addition to funds for his hotel stay for the next several weeks, and the two purchased food for his dog Cody.

Additionally, McClain recognized a service mindset and caring heart in Bigbey and asked if he needed employment. Bigbey excitedly agreed to interview for several possible positions in the market and loves the idea of someday becoming a Safelite technician.

On this day, more than any, I’d like to reiterate that members of the military can find job opportunities at www.SafeliteCareers.com.

Thank you.

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