SoCal community says thank you to Marine Corps veteran by giving him a brand new Honda Pilot

Marc Cota-Robles Image
Friday, October 21, 2022
EMBED <>More Videos

'I can't believe this is my vehicle.' Marine Corps Sergeant who served two tours of duty in Iraq receives a big thank you from the community: a brand new Honda Pilot

AZUSA, Calif. (KABC) -- Jose Vasquez is the definition of a U.S. war hero.

After enlisting in the military in December 2001, the Marine Corps sergeant went on to serve two tours of duty in Iraq.

In 2004, Vasquez was injured by an IED explosion and was honorably discharged. This many years later, a community is now saying thank you.

Vasquez, who now lives in Azusa with his family, was gifted a brand new Honda Pilot.

He applied for assistance, but had no idea this would happen.

"Oh my gosh, I couldn't even believe ... I still can't even believe this is my vehicle," said Vasquez. "I'm at a loss for words, thank you."

The new ride was all made possible by Helpful SoCal Honda Dealers in partnership with the Military Warriors Support Foundation and Wells Fargo.

"They think they're here for one thing and you come in and surprise them, I could really tell how touched he was and how much this means to him and his family," said Tami Horetski with Help Honda Dealers.

Since 2015, the Military Warriors Support Foundation has gifted cars to veterans nearly 150 times and it never gets old.

"To get a brand new payment-free car and to be able to enjoy that with his family is probably the best part of my job," said Barbara Johnson with Wells Fargo.

Vasquez is beyond grateful for what this gift has done for his family.

So what's the family's first stop in their new ride? A local pumpkin patch!