All Nominees

Barry Hassett

Military: Army veteran

My father is a retired Army vet who is disabled. He lives on social security month to month barely making ends meet. Medication alone uses a huge portion of his income. My parents are in desperate need of a new vehicle and unable to afford one. This would be an absolute blessing for them. My father served in the Army for many years until he was forced to retire so to copd and being unable to breathe. He’s an amazing grandfather and always has his grandchildren. Having a safe vehicle for them as well would be amazing. Thank you for your consideration.

kassandra klein

Military: Marines

Kassandra is a very giving person, on top of raising 2 children she works on the weekends as a care giver to an elderly couple, and just got a second job working at a local chocolate company, all while beijing the primary care giver of 2 children, taking them to school and picking them up everyday, feeding and bathing them, and driving them to sports and after school activities. The children are getting bigger ( 5 and 4, almost 6 and 5 now), and she needs a larger vechile but she just paid her car off within the last 2 years and doesn’t want to start a new car note.

Timothy Barrett

First Responder: Firefighter

Tim is one the most hard working and dedicated firemen I have worked with and he his also very humble. He is an amazing dad to his two kids who both play numerous sports, which Tim is always at every event, game, practice..etc. He currently drives a very old car and I feel he deserves an upgrade because of all the things he does for his kids.

Janelle Dzina

First Responder: US Probation Officer (20+ years in law enforcement)

My wife has over 20 years in with the federal government as law enforcement. She's turning 50 years old this year, works full time at US Probation (includes federal searches, home visits, court appearances, etc...) and teaches 2-3 times a week at Catalyst fitness in a kick-boxing class. She's fearless, beautiful, a caring mother of our 3 children and a rock-star of a human being! The photo I chose from my Facebook is of her with our youngest son.

Seth Shepard

Military: Marine Corps

Seth and his wife Audra, are the proud parents of 4 beautiful girls all under the age of 13. In addition, they foster 2 girls who are under the age of 4, plus they periodically take on additional fosters (as the time of this submission, they have 2 young boys). Taking so many children to and from school, appointments and sports/activities can be a challenge and having reliable transportation is essential for them. Seth served in the Marine Corps for over 5 year, including multiple deployments overseas. He works hard locally as a warehouse manager and I honestly cannot think of anyone who deserves a new vehicle more than this vet who gives so much.

Michael Sisti

Military: PJ - Airforce Special Forces

Mike is one of the greatest men I have the privilege of calling a friend. His service record is legendary as a pioneering member of one of the least recorded special forces units Mike served from Vietnam to the Gulf war, participating in many popular recorded rescue operations as a member of the Airforce Special Warefare. Their motto of Anything Anytime Anywhere is evident in the kind of friend Mike is. Mike is actively involved in helping both his community and fellow veterans understand the extent of the benefits entitled to them for their service. I can think of no one more deserving of this award.

Mike Sisti

Military: Air Force PJ (Para Rescue)

Vietnam Vet. Risked his life to save many others. Mike is one of the most inspirational and trustworthy individuals I have ever met in my entire life. Stand up guy, continues to serve his country in retirement with volunteer work, and devotion to his community. Literally the type of man that would take the shirt off his back for the welfare of others, even if it’s 20 below zero.

Mike Sisti

Military: Air force

Mike is a class A guy...he is ALWAYS willing to help family and friends in any capacity...he has a huge heart, loves people, especially his family, and would give his right arm to do anything for the people he loves.

Joshua Graham

Military: Marine

Josh has the heart of gold and I’m proud to call him my best friend. He’s seen many tours and served multiple places. He’s give the shirt off his back for someone in need. Examples : * Helped me through a dark period in my life. Through my mental illness and accident. There every step I could confide in him for three years . * He helps any vet whether he knows them or not through his face book. Even if it’s $50 to get someone gas. *There when you need any tool or a helping hand not only to me but every neighbor surrounding us and the biggest. Josh is a sports crazed fan, we root hometown together. Josh actually won Josh Allen’s truck last year and he declined the truck to help better his family financially who is newly married and two children. He took the smaller amount and after taxes, he was not left with much. he did accept a poster also. The point is,he’s the most selfless, caring person, who made physical and emotional sacrifices to better our home, our land, and our freedom

Christopher Lopardi

First Responder: Newton Abbott Fire Department

Not only is he a first responder he recently retired as an Airman after 22 years of service. He has been through deployments to the loss of his 7 year old son and still preserviers!

patrick dolch

Military: army and air force

they need a new car and they worked very hard in the army and air force

Michael Kozlowski

Military: Artillary

I feel as though he should be nominated because he’s given so much of his life both military and as a first responder. He has given back to the community and families in need. I think he deserves a reliable and dependable car to drive in to continue his work/giving back

Zachary Fox

First Responder: Firefighter EMT

Zachary displays dedication and determination to respond and help citizens in his community no matter what time of the early morning hours or by overcoming weather conditions Zachary always responds to an emergency call. Zachary has been without a car for over a year being forced to drive his mother’s car after his car had a break down and was not drivable.

Stephen Fitzpatrick

Military: Army

Mr. Fitzpatrick is one of the nicest men I know. He’s currently driving around a vehicle with 200,000 miles on it and it’s leaking transmission fluid all over his garage. He drives the Amish around It helps them anyway he can . He'd give the shirt off his back to anyone who needed it. He and his wife have lived in Angola and used to own bison. He’s retired from The Ford stamping plant in Buffalo and is a loyal Ford customer. He deserves this vehicle more than any person I know.

Wendy Coyde

Military: US Air Force

Wendy Coyde is a 20 year Veteran of the US Air Force , she was a survivor of her time spent in Desert Storm where she contracted a Lung Disease called Idiopathic Pulminary Fibrosis. Which is Terminal. She did receive a Double Lung Transplant in November of 2000 (the start of the Covid Pandemic ). Since then ( due to her immunosuppressant drugs ) she has had Covid twice and 6 Covid resistant shots. She was also a Teacher at South Park High school for 22 years when she retired when her Lung Disease took away her ability to function. It has been almost 4 years since she received her transplant but that has not stopped Wendy from helping the Community. She has become the Leader of the Tonawanda Homeless Task Force (where she has helped 22 Veterans and Homeless people Find homes and get off the streets. She is on call 24 hrs. a day helping the homeless in times of trouble and distress. She is also an animal lover and will do anything for a wounded animal or wounded Bird she sees.

Joshua Howerton

Military: 100% permanent and total disabled veteran

Saw an Instagram post about a car winning and wondered if there was something more specific to disabled vets only. Brought me here and I’m hoping to win because I’d love a vehicle just for traveling with my dogs and seeing the country I fought for.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army National Guard

Alexus has been an inspiration to me. She has faced a lot of adversity in her life and still strives to do her best each and every day. Her dedication is unwavering. She is one of the strongest people I know. Alexus has had nothing handed to her in life. She has had to climb and crawl her way through life, but never gives up. If she could be rewarded for her effort, she would make the most of it and wouldn't ever take it for granted. She is more than deserving. She does it all with a smile on her face. She's fair and honest and one of the best people I know.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army

Alexus is the most loving and hardworking individual I’ve ever met. She works nonstop to provide a wonderful life for her and her daughters. She recently was in a car accident and no longer has reliable transportation to the hospital she works at or to her monthly army obligations. She deserves a little treat.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: US Army National Guard

I am nominating Alexus Rehounek. She is a single mother of 2. She was recently in a car accident. As a result her car was totalled. Alex has to drive to and from PA each month for her drill duties. She is also in the medical field. I new vehicle would be helpful to her with her girls as well as getting her to and from her work and drill duties. Thank you.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army National Guard

I am nominating myself, I feel as if I should be considered for this opportunity because, it’s been an honor serving in the United States Army. I am currently serving in the Guards, I am a Specialist (E-4). I found out I come from a family who has served as well. I just moved back to Buffalo NY after living in central PA for the Last 4 years of my life. I am a single mom of 2 daughters. Recently, I got into a car accident and lost my only means of transportation but fortunately I walked away unscathed, I was extremely fortunate. As of right now I am struggling to find a vehicle for my family and I. So we’re taking Ubers or receiving rides from family or friends when available. However, I was scrolling on instagram and came across the account known as “Sweet Buffalo” and seen they had posted “Vehicle for Vets” and I took curiosity. This would be the biggest blessing in my family if we were to receive a gift like this. Thank you so much!

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army National Guard

Alexus is a kind hearted, humble, hard working young mom and soldier who is without a car due to a recent accident. She is in dire need of a reliable vehicle, not only for day to day things, but she also has to travel from Buffalo to PA at least monthly in order to fulfill her Army National Guard meetings.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: US Army National Guard I am a Specialist

I’m nominating Alexus because she’s a hardworking mother of 2. She puts others before her and she deserves to have something for herself.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: U.S. Army National Guard

Alexus is a hard working mom. She often puts others needs before her own and she has a huge heart. She has and is overcoming hurdles to be the woman she wants her daughters to see as they grow. She recently lost her vehicle in an accident and it would relieve a great burden if she could get a new car.

David Savko

Military: Army

David served in the Vietnam war but stationed in Korea. He was proud to serve his country. David is a very kind and generous man. If someone needs help, he is there. He is a fly fisherman and would volunteer his time if someone wanted to learn. I nominate him, he is the best husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather. Also a great friend to many.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army National Guard

Alexus is an amazing mother, sister, friend and just all around genuine person. She is honored to serve her country and does it with heart. She was recently in a car accident that was not her fault, and because of that she no longer had a car. She is well deserving of receiving a vehicle.

Patrick Devine

Military: Marine Corps

Hardworking and caring person who puts his family first.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: US ARMY NATIONAL GUARD

Alexus is such a bright hard working young woman she is not only dedicated to being a champion of her own life but a champion mother to her beautiful daughters she currently has no vehicle or means of transportation due to an accident. Alexus is so committed to serving our country she has to travel from Buffalo to PA routinely to fulfill her duties. And despite all her odds you can always count on her to have a smile on her face and fight through any adversary! I don’t know anyone more deserving!

Josh Szukala

First Responder: EMT

Josh is a great guy! Him and his wife just had a baby. Times are tough and they struggle to make ends meet. This doesn’t stop him and his wife from giving back to their community. They run the 4 H chapter for their county and volunteer their time and horses to keep kids interested, educated and out of trouble. A reliable vehicle would mean the world to him and his wife. They live in the country that is not well-plowed in the winter. Josh, as a first responder, has to go to work even in the worst of conditions. They also need a vehicle to get their newborn son to doctors appointments which is quite some distance from their farm. They have many animals to care for and tend to so their resources prioritize their farm. Their current vehicle breaks down on the regular and is an unreliable source of transportation. This makes him the perfect candidate to be awarded a vehicle.

Alexandra Lindstrom

First Responder: Dispatcher for Lancaster PD

My wife is a generous and wonderful woman who not only supports our family as a Dispatcher for the Town of Lancaster but has also supported me as a disabled veteran. I can think of no other person who deserves this more.

Casey Kubala

First Responder: Line Officer

I am very proud of my daughter Casey , she has been a volunteer responder for nine years. She is the 1st female line officer at the Barker Fire Department. She has to many calls and helped so many people in need. She works at Roswell Hospital as a CLT. Being a 1st responder has given her the opportunity to help people in her community.

Michelle MacLeod

First Responder: Sheriff Deputy

Because she my mom and I love her a lot her car also just broke it won’t turn off it can drive without the keys in and they don’t know what’s wrong or how to fix it

Mike Serach

Military: US Air Force

I was an enlisted active duty airmen for 20 years; retired as an E7 (Master Sergeant) in 1998. I continued my career after retirement serving first as a contractor supporting the Air Force Emergency Management career field for 5 years. In 2017, I went to work for USDA as an emergency responder with ESF#11, providing direct support at the FEMA National Response Coordination Center for several national-level disasters - included several hurricanes and the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2020 I transferred back to the Air Force as a civil servant. I am currently the Installation Emergency Manager at Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.

Caleb Spark

First Responder: City of Lockport Fire Department

My son Caleb has been a firefighter for 18 months. Before that he was a volunteer firefighter and EMT. He is selfless! He has worked his full time job, going full time to paramedic school, doing his clinical time all while also helping put his wife through nursing school as she also works at the VA hospital. He never does for himself, he is always giving to his family, friends and community. He has not upgraded his vehicle in years. As you can imagine, a reliable vehicle is very important in his line of work to be able to respond to an emergency.

Cory Eberiwine

Military: Army

Cory is a wonderful person. He was a medic in the army, so I’m sure he has seen many horrific things and tried to save lives. He suffers with PTSD he has been a father to my great niece and great nephew, my niece lost her husband. He was in the army. He was killed in Afghanistan. Cory met her and they’ve been together ever since raising the two children who are now older and one is special-needs and he’s always been loving and patient with them even when he suffers from his own PTSD I think this will be a wonderful blessing to him because he has been a blessing to my family .

Alexus Rehounek

Military: Army Reserve

Alexus lost her car after an accident. She struggled skimped and saved for this car to improve her life. She has worked extremely hard to make a go of her life and has achieved almost everything she has worked for. A new job, a new apartment and the car she lost. She needs a way to get to and from work. She has two young daughters who she is trying to regain custody of and now without a car this makes it very difficult. She is in the Army Reserve and also needs transportation to and from drill which is in a neighboring state from where she just moved.

Chase Harmon

Military: Marines Sgt

8 year vet starting civilian life for his Wife and 2 sons. Found a job, but needs a vehicle to get there and safely travel with his family.

Corey Smith

First Responder: Paramedic, EMT, Firefighter, rescue squad

Corey has been a volunteer firefighter and worked in the Ambulance and rescue squad since he was 14. He started off as a junior firefighter and work with people in the rescue squad and Ambulance core until he was old enough to join. He works for MTS as an EMT and has recently gone to school to becoming a paramedic. He just passed yesterday and is now a paramedic. He’s been an ambulance chief and has been involved with the Ambulance and rescue squad for almost 20 years.

Nathan Morabito

First Responder: EMT/ parametric and great human being !

My son has made raising him such a joy, he has always been respectful responsible and loving. He started out as a volunteer fireman at 15 years old and became an EMT in high school and then continued on to get his paramedics degree his dream is to work on Mercy flight. He is currently working for mercy ambulance. When he is not working he is on the fire hall donating his time and going on EMT calls on fire rescue . He has always been a great community member. All of his free time is donated to his fire company. He might not be the biggest hero but he is my biggest hero and he could really benefit from a new vehicle he is currently driving a 1985 Toyota Celica, and he loves his Toyota but I would love to see him in a very safe car. Nate in is the middle of this picture along with part of his Hamburg fireman family.

Corey Smith

First Responder: Paramedic

I am nominating Corey because he is a very dedicated member of our local community. He just recently got his paramedic certification in New York State. He is also in the local fire department and volunteers many many hours to our community.

Thomas Berger

Military: Army

I’m nominating him for his dedication and commitment to serving his country. Thomas spent a number of years serving in the military police both stateside and abroad, he also served his state as a correctional officer for many years. Thomas gives his all in everything he does from caring for his family, to his job.

Timothy Egnaczyk

Military: Army

Oh man, my father.... I honestly don't know where to begin. From amazing work ethic, prioritizing events, prioritizing his kids, to important life lessons, to wanting the absolute best for his loved ones. Boy did I luck out. He has taught me the most important things in life. Taught me respect for everyone, not just elders or people of authority, but everyone regardless of background. Family and country first. Taught me to make sure your loved ones know that you love them. Taught me to be proud of the land we walk on, and to respect and honor the ones who signed that blank check and gave both some and all to this land. He taught me to be proud. Proud of who I am, the lessons I continue to learn, and he doesn't know that what I'm most proud of, is to be lucky enough to be called his daughter. I aspire to be half the person he is.

Christopher Wojcik

Military: Army

Christopher is an upstanding member of the community and is a native to the Buffalo area. He has worked so hard to provide for his family, even when he has to be away from them for a long time. He recently had a baby that had some medical complications and his wife and him need another car so that his wife can get to and from work so neither of them are super late or super early and waiting in the cold.

Sabrina Herbert

First Responder: Registered Nurse

Sabrina is a hard working wife & mother of 4. The fact that Sabrina was born with cerebral palsy has never slowed her down. Growing up she was told how CP would slow her down for this or that. She always would show those who said she "cant", that they are wrong. Recently Sabrina finished school with her RN, all while working part time and being a mother of 4 younger children. Always putting her a smile on for everyone to see, I am very proud to call her my daughter in law! As of today, vehicle she currently has, had been in and out of the shop with issue after issue. Not to sure how much longer it will go. Seeing Sabrina have a reliable vehicle for her journey of being an RN would definitely be a highlight in her family's eyes.

James Hilchey

Military: Navy Seal

Jim has been an all around great person in our family. He always takes the time to see how everyone is doing and never misses a chance to catch up. He is always the first to lend a hand and always makes you feel welcome, no matter what. He has regularly kept up with his friends who served and has spoken highly of all of them. I just think he is a great man and deserves to be recognized for all he's been through in the military and life. Best of Luck to him!! ~Lucas Stahl

Charlie Fergusen

Military: Navy and Marine special ops medical

Charlie is a combat veteran who I can't say enough positive things about. This guy would do anything for anyone. He is a father of 4 who works his butt off to provide for his family. Being the sole provider for his family there is no one more deserving than Charlie. He never hesitates to be there for anyone in need. Has helped me in life more times than i can count. He was injured while serving in the military and is still a volunteer fireman for the town of Clarence who responds to any call he can. He has a huge heart for anyone as he served his country but still is always ready to jump into action. He is an incredible friend and an even better father and husband.

Anthony Muraco

Military: Former 101st Airborne Division Army and current Firefighter

I feel Anthony should be nominated to win a car because of his outstanding dedication and service to our nation and community. As a former member of the 101st Airborne Division of the Army, Anthony displayed exceptional bravery, resilience, and commitment. His military service is marked by the highest standards of courage and duty. Now, as a firefighter, Anthony continues to risk his life daily to protect and serve others. His transition from a distinguished military career to a critical role in public safety showcases his unwavering commitment to helping those in need. Winning this car would honor Anthony's sacrifices and support his continued efforts to make a positive impact on our community.

Donald Waddell

Military: Army

I am nominating Donald waddell. He served in the army for almost 10 years between active and reserves. He is disabled due to his serves. He is unable to work because it. So he use his time to help other veterans when he can. He is a father of four kids and my wonderful husband. He lives on a fixed income and if he could free up some income with receiving one of these cars he would help out other veterans that need help. The car payment is so so high he have so this would really need this. He always loves helping other veterans with the American Legion, WNy Heroes and Veteran One stop center. This would take a huge weight off his shoulders if you would pick him. Thank you sir or madam that this concerns

Jennifer Piske

First Responder: Firefighter

I am nominating my fantastic wife. She has been a firefighter at U-Crest for over two years, Substitute teaches grades prek-12 in the Maryvale school district and had spent nearly a decade as a volunteer cheer coach for rec league cheerleaders. She's the chairwoman of U-Crest's Fire Prevention committee and was elected this year to be the recording secretary. She regularly schedules her job around or takes off work to run events to educate our community. All this on top of being the most loving and attentive mother to our two children.

Ray Mercado

Military: Army

Ray and I were going together in the summer of 1967. It was during the Vietnam war and the draft was on. He knew he would get drafted and so he volunteered for the army so we could make plans for our future together. He has never talked much about his time in Vietnam and when he returned he hitched hiked back to Olean. Times were different back then. No welcome signs. Most people didn’t even know he was gone. We’ve been married 53 years and the only time I saw my husband cry was when we went to see the Vietnam wall that came to Olean.

Mike Holbrook

Military: Air Force

He has been someone I've always looked up to. He has done a few tours and spent a lot of time in the Air Force as a field tech for the war planes. He's a loving devoted Christian father of 5 children who could use all the help they can get. His wife recently had to start working part time to help with finances even with his military benefits. He was always the sole provider for his wife and family of 5 with his military pension. He's also recently lost his mother which has taken a huge mental toll on him and his kids. His father is also deceased from cancer who was also a military vet.

Anthony Muraco

Military: Army

My brother Anthony joined the army right out of high school. He was very dedicated until his unfortunate accident that didn’t allow him to further his career in the military. But since coming home he’s also been a volunteer firefighter for Kenmore and is now a volunteer with ellwood fire dept.

Vaughn Collingridge

First Responder: Wyoming county deputy sheriff

Vaughn is truly a blessing to our community and the most deserving human. Vaughn is always looking to better himself not only for himself but also for his community. He has taken on extra training to become a crash recognition expert and drug recognition expert. He is constantly working longer hours and taking calls in the middle of the night to insure the streets are safe for our families. He recently received an award from MADD ( mothers against drunk driving) for being one of the top DRE enforcers in the area. He is someone who truly cares about bettering our community and that is why I believe he is a perfect nominee.

Mike Karnyski

Military: Army

My dad is a Army Viet Nam veteran! Endured a life changing working injury over 25 years ago, developed RSD from injury several surgeries,partial amputation. He was a volunteer fireman,avid blowler,fishing softball all taken from him. He's the most selfless man who still puts everyone else first. He deserves a new vehicle not having to worry about repairs and is reliable!!

Chris Coleman

Military: Army

I am nominating Chris because he is not only a veteran, but will drop everything that he's doing to help you. He puts himself last, and everyone first. He raised 3 great kids, is currently in his 18th year with his employer, has a meticulous garden, loves his family and girlfriend and is just an all around class act.

Shaun Minich

First Responder: Paramedic/Fire Chief/Police Officer

I am nominating Shaun for this because he puts everyone and the community before himself. He’s been a volunteer firefighter for 11 years, making rank of Chief. He’s been an EMT just along. During COVID he went through paramedic school to advance his skills in helping the sick and injured. In 2022 he was accepted into the Police Academy and is now serving the Town Of Hamburg as a Police Officer. Shaun is a remarkable human being who goes above and beyond daily to serve and protect his community. This is his passion, this is his joy.

Timothy and Clayton (father and son) Pike

First Responder: Father-Lt. and son-fightfighter

Let me explain how and why this father and son first responders need a vehicle. Lt. Timothy Pike has 30+ years in the LakeView VFD. His son Clayton was recently awarded First Responder of the Year. But both suffered dual catastrophes. Clay broke his neck and battled through years of rehabilitation. Timothy suffered a genetic blood disease which became chronic, requiring a kidney transplant. Both father and son faced life/death situations. Tim couldn’t work so the paychecks stopped. Clay needed rehab in Pittsburgh and Atlanta. Mom’s job was keeping both alive in the ICU. Tim had a successful kidney transplant and eventually returned to light duty at the fire station. Clayton fought through years of rehab to regain nearly 100% of his functions. One of the family vehicles got too rusty to pass inspection. Tim must travel to Buffalo for regular hospital check-ups and Clayton needs a vehicle to commute to college, work and emergency calls. This family needs a vehicle.

Benjamin Hawkins

Military: Air Firce

Ben is a great guy who puts his family and community first. He is forever helping with the concession stands at his kids school, helping at his church and with a rescue as needed. He is currently driving an Aveo that is very old, and currently is sitting at the shop to get fixed. He is always driving around to help others fix things, deliver items for his wife and transporting his kids to events, friends and to the fire station as needed.

Elijah Hawkins

First Responder: Volunteer Fire Fighter

Elijah is a young man who has struggled with who he is. Then one day at work their was a serious accident. Elijah was able to jump in and help.due to previous training he had in school. This was his change day. He went and applied to be home a volunteer fire fighter for the Seneca Nation. He is currently driving over 40 miles two to three times a week for trainings.he has taken his civil service exam for Cattarsaugus County and is ranked 2.as he waits for a possible full time position he is continuing to work on making himself better with taking classes. Hopefully in the fall he will begin EMT training. His car even though pretty new to him, needs to be replaced. He has been told that the case holding his transmissions is almost rusted out. He works part time so he can run and answer calls for the fire department and continue taking classes.

Jason Rosales

Military: USMC

My husband, a dedicated and now retired veteran of 21 years with the Marine Corps, exemplifies bravery, sacrifice, and selflessness. He has served our country with honor and distinction, putting his life on the line to protect our freedoms in both OIF and OEF. Despite the challenges he has faced, he continues to demonstrate resilience and courage every day. Having been so selfless in his commitment to his country and to his family he is truly deserving of this nomination.

Brent Philipps

Military: Navy

Brent has served for 19 years in the Navy on active duty. He spent 13 years serving on Submarines, spending countless hours away from his wife and 4 children. In addition to serving, he has been an active volunteer in his community in California, Connecticut and New York, coaching Little League teams and Youth Soccer teams for over 10 years. A special individual like him deserves a new vehicle to transport all that sports equipment and would be a fitting tribute for him nearing his retirement from the Military.Thank you for your consideration.

Alexus Rehounek

Military: U.S. ARMY NATIONAL GUARD

Alexus Rehounek is an all around good person and hardworking woman/mother. In addition to being dedicated to her children/mothering, and her job (in the medical field), she is also dedicated to her country serving as a U.S. Army National Guard. Alexus was recently involved in a vehicular accident and is currently without a vehicle. She is in dire need of a vehicle to transport herself to work; to accommodate her daily routines; and to transport herself (out of state to PA) on a monthly basis to fulfill her Natural Guard duties. It is my hope that she will be seriously considered to be a recipient of a much needed vehicle.

Bradley Hert

Military: Navy

Brad has been in the navy for over 8 years and is a very selfless individual. Currently he is working in one of the nation's most critical and stressful positions in the US miltary. He is a recruiter. He is at the tip of the spear in ensuring this nation stays protected by trying to find the next generation of military applicants. It would be awesome to surprise him with this.

Christine Bangel

Military: USMC

Christine is my sister and deserves something decent in her life. She was an active USMC for six years and inactive for two years. She loved her job and serving her country until she was injured. Although she is in alot of pain herself, she is always there helping someone else when she can. To mention just a few, Christine helps my mother, my daughter and myself with taking us to our appointments, to the stores or doing anything that we need help with. She currently drives a vehicle that is over 20 years old that is falling apart. The door has to be lifted to close and with the pain she is in, it just adds to it. Please consider my sister Christine for a vehicle so she can continue to do what she loves and that is helping others.

Robert Fontaine

Military: Navy

Hello, I am nominating Robert Fontaine because he is one of the most unselfish people that I know. I am disabled and find it difficult to get to appointments and errands. But Bob has come to my “rescue” . For the past 7 years he takes his personal time to get me to appointments and errands and waits for me all the while. And he does this without asking for a dime. He does this for a few other people as well. He also takes care of his disabled sister in his home. I know that he is in desperate need of a new vehicle because he’s always telling me how much money he has to put into his present vehicle, and like most of us , he lives from paycheck to paycheck. Please consider my friend, Robert Fontaine, for a new vehicle. Thank you. Thomas Tarnowski

Christine Bangel

Military: USMC

I am nominating Christine because she is a disabled woman veteran who is in need of a vehicle, the vehicle she has now is a 2003 Ford explorer and is in need of many repairs at this time. I feel she deserves this vehicle because she has to go back and forth to her medical appointments at the VA medical center on Bailey Avenue in Buffalo, as they can be many at times and without a reliable vehicle sometimes she needs to rely on her family (which are only a few) or cancel important appointments that sometimes take up to 5-6 months to get these days. She also takes care of getting her mother/sister to her medical appointments , which is difficult with her current vehicle situation (drivers door does not open/close properly). With the cost of inflation it is utterly impossible to afford a replacement vehicle and the windshield wipers aren’t working either. It would be like a dream if she could feel like a normal person in society and not be embarrassed every time she drives it. Tysm

TIMOTHY CARDONE

Military: Army

My dad has always been there for me.He is a real man and has taught me alot in life.I love him more than life.

Megan Diaz

First Responder: RN

I am nominating my girlfriend Megan for the first responder contest. She is currently a Registered Nurse at Millard Fillmore Suburban Hospital. As a RN, the sacrifices she makes are substantial. She works tirelessly - nights, weekends, holidays - ensuring patients always have someone dedicated to their care. Nursing is undeniably one of the most demanding professions, and Megan has been through it all, including being stuck at the hospital during inclement weather (the picture I'm submitting). No matter the challenges, Megan consistently returns to every shift and every patient with renewed commitment. Megan prioritizes others' needs above her own. Now, we have the opportunity to put her first, showing genuine appreciation for her invaluable contributions to her patients and our community. That's why I'm nominating Megan - she definitely deserves to win.

Megan Diaz

First Responder: Registered Nurse

I am writing to nominate my sister, Megan, for your "Vehicles for First Responders" contest. As her youngest sibling, I have closely observed her unwavering dedication to nursing and I firmly believe she exemplifies the spirit this award seeks to honor. Megan has been a RN for fourteen years, serving in high-stakes environments such as the ER, Covid units in NYC, and cardiac units. In these demanding settings, she routinely cares for critically ill patients whose conditions can change rapidly, requiring constant vigilance and quick interventions. What sets Megan apart is her role as a float nurse, a position demanding exceptional adaptability as she moves between multiple hospital units in a single shift to meet fluctuating staffing needs. I respectfully urge you to consider my sister for this life-changing prize. Her work ethic, expertise, and willingness to serve wherever needed make her a standout candidate. Thank you for your consideration, Rosie "Proud of My Big Sister" Avery

Colin Keenan

First Responder: Police

Colin works everyday to protect and serve the city community where he grew up.

Gil Ryerson

Military: Navy

As some one who has worked for him for almost 2 years, he is an amazing leader. Always taking care of me and encouraging me to grow as a Sailor. He is a true leader and not a boss. Demonstrating what right looks like even though it's not always the easy choice. Since working for him he has given me reason to continue to serve. I am thankful for that and for him. That is why I'd like to surprise him.

William Kelberer

Military: Veteran Marine and Volunteer First Responder

William is a 50 year old Veteran Marine and First Responder. (It's true...I've seen documents and photos) He's very modest and doesn't really like to talk about his time in service. He has recently sustained a knee injury that has affected his ability to work. During his recovery he has continued to drive two of his workmates to work every day and every day I wonder how I could help his situation. Hes been driving my car. Thats one car supporting four people. How great would it be for him to have his own transportation when he goes back to work. I don't know much about his time in the Marines, but I DO know that William is a hero. A hero to me and many who know him. Thank you for your consideration.

Mathew Bryant

Military: USAF

Chaplin Bryant is the current serving Chaplin at the 914h reserve station in Niagara Falls. On a daily basis he takes care of the bases spiritual, mental, and physical needs. Weather an Airman needs to talk to someone about suicidal thoughts or to book row his truck he covers it and everything in between. Chaplain Bryant has a wife and 4 kids. They currently have a mini band and a F150. He drives the F150 which is getting up there in years and recently has been having some issues. The Chaplin and his family are well deserving and in need. I think they would make a great selection for your giveaway.

Michele Gogolowski

First Responder: AEMT

Michele is a hard working and compassionate person. She uses her skills to help people and for very little pay. She works for a paid ambulance company full time, volunteers for a fire company and works a part time job 15 hours a week but still finds it difficult to make ends meet. She’s not happy with her vehicle and owes more than it’s valued at. She attempted to continue her nursing schooling that she started several years ago only to find herself further in debt. Unfortunately she got Covid midway through her schooling, it became overwhelming with her already hectic schedule and she was not able to catch up on her homework.

Darren Vanwhy

First Responder: Vice president Coudersport volunteer fire department.

Darren has been a volunteer fire fighter since 1988. He has held many offices throughout the years, including chief of Austin volunteer fire department. He has given numerous hours to maintaining the trucks, building trucks, training, teaching, work details, monthly checks on all equipment along with the paper work duties of being a vice president. His truck he has now is really showing its age and there is one thing a volunteer fire department needs is the crew getting to the station. We don’t have paid professionals we only have volunteers so it is very important to get the crew there. Thank you for Recognizing our first responders. For your information, the picture is of Darren and his granddaughter during one of the parades that he volunteers his time to clean and get the truck ready for and drive in.

Richard Busch

Military: Us Navy veteran

My husband is a Vietnam veteran from Navy ,he deserves to be nominated because he a great man and is always doing for everyone and gets nothing in return he is my hero.

Nicholas Lagowski

Military: Air Force, Air Force Reserve

I've known him for years!!!😊 Six years in the Air Force and currently in the reserves.. Great guy and patriot, will give you the shirt off his back. He was out of the Air Force for a few years and decided he missed it and joined the reserves at Niagara Falls Air Base.. While in the Air Force he did two tours in the Honor Guard which we are "so" proud of and when he came home for his grandfather's funeral, he wasn't pleased with the way the American flag was folded and asked his mother if she would mind if he did it properly. It is on display in our home! It can be hectic at times working a full time job as well as serving in the Reserves, but he manages it well! He was kind of lost before the military, but came out focused and with a purpose.. It would be nice to see him get some recognition for his dedication to his country and flag.

Scott Allison

Military: Marine - Veteran

I feel as if my dad has been nothing but honorable my entire life. He left the military to help his dying dad back in the 90’s but during his time he was in the marine core and ended up being a recruiter as well. My dad has never not been there for me or for anyone that ever needed his help. A stranger could knock on the door and he’d help him. He didn’t always have the means but he had the love to do it. He’s taught me a lot about who I want to be as a human being and what it means to have integrity. He deserves everything the world has to offer. He’s one of the kindest souls I know.

Michael Pontikos

Military: Army

100 percent disabled Vietnam veteran and served 32 yrs on the Buffalo Fire Department receiving metal Awards

Juan Flores

Military: Marine Corp

Juan is a Marine through and through! He served 13 years on active duty; he wanted to make a 20-year career out of it, but circumstances dictated otherwise. That hasn't stopped him from carrying the Marine Corp ethos into every aspect of his civilian life however. Always looking for a way to serve, he became a trusted leader in the world of private corrections. Despite his impairments during service, this man embodies integrity in all ways! Whether he’s helping a stranger load their car, talking a suicidal detainee off the ledge, or passing on carpentry skills to his son, Juan tries to utilize his knowledge and experience to always help everyone he comes across. Whether he’s serving his nation, his community, or his family – honor, courage, and commitment are values that permeate everything he does. The most modest man I’ve met, it would be wonderful to finally acknowledge his dedication to others. Semper Fi!

Anna Pol

First Responder: Neuro ICU nurse

After serving 8 years in the Army as a combat photographer, Anna settled in Buffalo with her husband and children and went to school to become a nurse. While in school, her car was damaged during an attempted robbery at her home. She needs reliable transportation to complete her mission as a nurse in ICU currently working the night shift. Anna’s very dedicated to her profession and her nursing career and could use a better vehicle to get to work safely.

miguel perez

Military: us air force

I am nominating my husband ,Miguel. Miguel has served for almost 20 years in the USA and abroad. He is not only a wonderful husband but also a military leader who shows character traits of integrity ,creativity ,empathy, and most of all dedication to the United States. Miguel also hosts troops in our home that are in need and we make food for them homemade as much as we can . We would be honored to obtain a new car.

Steven Obe

Military: Airforce

He lost his wife (my grandmother) two years ago and has not been the same since. He is Native American and was only just last year acknowledged for his service. He finally received his medals after 50 years. Being recognized is something that means so much to him. He has two children. Three grand children and two great grandchildren who his wife never got to meet.

Randy Davis

First Responder: Fire chief

I can remember from the day he could walk anytime he heard sirens he would come running. He used to wait by the TV to watch Emergency 911. He has volunteered at the Holley Fire Dept. since he was 14, became a jr firefighter, first responder to Kendall Chief. When available, he never misses a call, he even leaves family events to help others even holidays. He volunteers at other fire companies when needed. He never brags or asks for thanks. He even follows to hospitals and waits for outcomes. He is well known in the community. He has had to seek help because some calls break his heart but he keeps going to save lives and put out fires. I know he is my hero!

Christopher Lopardi

Military: Airforce

Chris has not only served our country as an Airman I believe MSgt, for 22 years before his retirement, he was also an assistant fire chief in the Airforce. He has had several deployments, TDY's and while doing all of this, he lost his 7 year old son to ADEM in may of 2020 while stationed in Idaho. Chris is an amazing father, husband, son, son in law, brother, brother in law and uncle. He has also lived by God, Country, Family! Now that he is retired, he is also a volunteer fireman for Abbott Newton Fire Department. He has had is present vehicle a Tundra for 17 (+/-) years. It has been from Texas, to NY, to Florida, to Alaska, to Florida, to Alaska, to Idaho, Delaware, and NY. I think he deserves a new vehicle.

Russell Maracle

Military: Marines Vietnam vet

This man is my brother he’s partially disabled. He’s a Vietnam vet. His vehicle is falling apart. He can’t afford a new one hoping you can help me him out

Michael Marinell

Military: US ARMY

MY HUSBAND SERVED TWO YEARS DURING THE VIET NAM WAR. HIS LAST TOUR OF DUTY WAS IN SOUTH KOREA. HE SPENT 9 MONTHS THERE BEFORE HE WAS RELEASED TO GO BACK TO COLLEGE. HE HAS HELPED VETS WITH PEER TO PEER ACTIVATES ESPECIALLY IN PHOTOGRAPHY.

Jim Carrig

Military: Army

Jim was at Ft Lewis where we serve at Ft Lewis we are both Vietnam era veterans. It was a lot different than compared to now. Jim served with Honor and always the Army way. Later he went to Germany till he ets with a Honorable discharge. Still today still serves with the Veterans groups in the Buffalo area. It is a honor for me to nominate Jim Carrig, I look forward to working with him as a American Legion and I am a Veterans of Foreign Wars. Roy Kunzi

Caitlin Vazquez

Military: Army

So this is my best friend she a veteran who suffer from serve ptsd and anxiety, she put everyone before herself even when she having an attack,one time we went to a concert together and she was having a panic attack and she left w the amr crew and refused to let me leave and she came to find me once she claim down, she is one of the most non selfish people I know she help her gramma all the time and her parent ,but besides that her bf was diagnosed with cancer and she takes him to his doctors appointment as well as help with with his 3 kids on top of her 2 kids of her own well in school to become an Emt, and working a part time job .she also voulenteer with 2 charity group in her free time The hope project of wny and Wny Heroes .and in all of that craziness she still fine time to quilt ,and bowl on a mom n me league with her son I hope she get pick because I know she be greatful and it will help her to contuine to help others

Barbra Mann

First Responder: Fire Chief

I would like to nominate Fire Chief Barbra Mann. She is the first Female Fire Chief in the Town of West Seneca. Chief Mann has been in the fire service for 36 years of service to the community. Respected by her community and family for the accomplishments. Chief Mann has held numerous offices in the department and a top responder for her tenure in the department. This fine leader motivates others and promotes volunteerism everyday. Volunteering and serving her community is in her DNA. Barbra is a third generation firefighter. Her grandfather served and her father was Fire Chief 60 years ago in the same department. Dedicating her life to assisting others has been seen throughout the county. Her outstanding service and dedication is unprecedented to the emergency services field. Based on this service I have personally experienced from Fire Chief Barbra Mann, I would not hesitate to recommend her for this prestigious award from Basil.

Alan Ortiz

First Responder: Police

Det. Alan Ortiz, a friend and a true hero, whose actions have always been an inspiration. Along with being a Buffalo Police Det. he is also a Master Diver on the Buffalo Police Underwater Recovery Unit (U.R.T.), a father of 4 and a devoted family man. He has always put the safety and needs of others 1st. His heroism, bravery and selflessness doesn’t just stop when he removes his badge. This was showcased during a particular event that happened last Summer. While on the way home from a family outing late in the evening, Det. Ortiz noticed the taillights of a car in what he knew was a pond. He approached the vehicle and found 3 older individuals trapped inside with water quickly filling the car. With all the right skills, training and equipment Det. Ortiz immediately went into rescue mode. He used straps to attach the sinking vehicle to his personal vehicle to stop the car from further submerging into the pond. He was then able to get everyone freed from the car and out safely

Michaell Rumschik

Military: Army

Our son Michael is an army chaplain. I don’t know if people realize all the sacrifices our service men/women make. Not only was he deployed to Afghanistan when his children were born, but has to leave them behind every time he is moved to a new unit. When they are back together they have to find a new place to live , but only for 2-3 years then on the move again. Every time something’s are broken in the move or even lost.then they have to sell one of their cars and find another in the new location. But asked if he would give it up he would say no, he loves working and helping the soldiers in his care, plus his love of his country and what it stands for in the world.

chris muraco

First Responder: fire fighter

I think Chris muraco should be nominated because he puts out fires in the community so there is not houses burning all the time

Clyde Dunn

Military: Army

Because he served his country in Vietnam just to come back to be harassed, disrespected, for no reason of his own. These soldiers were treated so bad when they returned home. None of them deserved that. For something good to come his way finally maybe would let him release some of that hurt and feeling of betrayal.

Thomas Reuter

First Responder: Paramedic/Supervisor

Very competent and dedicated paramedic / supervisor !

Ronald Shanks

Military: Navy

My grandpa works three days a week and his car is currently falling apart. He always serves others before himself and is such a kind person. He can’t afford a new car, but he really deserves one. I want to give something to the person that always gives to others.

George Fitzpatrick

Military: Navy

I am nominating my husband George A. Fitzpatrick for this honor because he is truly one of the most selfless people I have ever met. George has been involved with the Boys & Girls Club since a child (38 years now) mentoring at-risk youth. He works there every afternoon, in addition to working full-time for the government during the day. George also coaches flag football teams on the weekends and has even brought teams to the Special Olympics "Buffalo Bowl" to raise funds in support of Special Olympic athletes. George also founded his own nonprofit organization in 2014, the River Rock Community Coalition (RRCC), to enhance the quality of life in his underserved childhood neighborhoods of Riverside and Black Rock. This organization is 100% volunteer based, and has been serving the community for over 10 years now, though regular events, clean-ups and improvement projects (www.rrccbuffalo.org). On top of all of this George is a dedicated father of 4 children, and an amazing husband!

Richard Richter

Military: Navy, Radio Operator, Korean War veteran on U. S. S. Gherardi Destroyer

Richard has always volunteered his time for others and whether family or friends, gives selflessly to everyone always! Whether it is church functions, charity fundraising or neighborhood assistance he is always there for others! At the age of 94 and driving a 21-year-old vehicle he's in need of a new vehicle after many expensive repairs the last couple of years. He is able to do his grocery shopping, pays all bills, cuts his own lawn with a push behind lawn mower, he even insists on snow blowing his driveway. Richard is one of nine and the youngest who begged his mom for an early allowance to be admitted into the US Navy to assist his older brothers in the Korean war which she proudly accepted. Richard left high School as a sophomore to defend our country, achieving top grade in radio School and in basic training. Richard was involved in Honor Flight Rochester and frequents the Buffalo Naval Park proudly and graciously educating children and adults. He needs a new car desperately, TY

Ronald Shanks

Military: Navy

I’m nominating my brother-in-law for the veteran nomination. He fought in Vietnam war and was never really appreciated for his services back then.He has always been the person who would do anything to help someone and I feel that this would be a great person to receive a new car as he drives to work in a old junker.

James M. Rosolowski

Military: Army

Jim is a true patriot, who served in Germany 1967-1969, as a heavy-equipment operator. He is sure to display our American Flag daily. He is a dedicated, loving husband, father & grandfather....who loves this country. He helps everyone he can whether he knows them or not.....and brings a smile to everyone that he comes into contact with.....an "earth Angel".

Jennifer Zirilli

Military: Air Force

She is a hard working step mom who helped raise my two beautiful boys . Twins aren’t easy! She works non stop and never catches a break. She goes above and beyond for anybody and puts her family first! That’s hard to do, especially when you’re in the military . She has 6 years in and still going strong !

Arron Schultz

Military: United States Air Force

My husband has served and was medically retired after 16 years of service. His selfless dedication to his country was done with honor.

David Green

Military: Army

Served our country in Viet Nam during some trying times in 1971=1972.I am very proud of him and could use a new vehicle instead of paying for a leased vehicle!!!

Chris Lopardi

Military: Air Force

Chris recently retired from the Air Force after serving for 22 years. He was a fire fighter during his time in the Air Force and he was deployed 3 times, twice to Iraq and once to South East Asia. He also traveled all over the world on operations. Chris is my husband and he also the father to our 4 children. As a family we have moved all over the country from duty station to duty station so he could continue to grow and meet promotions necessary to further his career. As an Airman my husband has devoted so much of his time for our country and as his family we have stood by his side through it all. He's a hard working dedicated man and deserves all the best. He has been driving his current vehicle since 2005 and I feel he deserves an upgrade. He had won numerous awards and recognition throughout his career and he is now a Senior Health and Safety Annalyst insuring all employees return home safe to their families. I really hope you consider Chris for this amazing opportunity! Thank you.

Paul Ruper

Military: Air Force

My father spent his career as a proud member of the Air Force serving our country. He made sacrifices to fulfill his duties, some that affected our family, and some that took him away from my sister and I for extended periods of time during childhood years. He has always shown up for us even when unable to be physically present. He cares greatly for others and has continued to serve his community and his family in his retirement. He puts his needs last and focuses on meeting the needs of others around him. He is the one person in my life that has never let me down and shows up even when it is really painful. I would love for him to be recognized for all that he does still to this day.

Wendy Coyde

Military: US Air Force

Wendy Coyde is a 20 year Air Force Vet . She is also a recipient of a Double Lung Transplant, She picked up a lung disease called Idiopathic Pulminary Fibrosis when she was serving in Desert Storm. which she received at the beginning of the Covid Pamdemic in November of 2000 . After she left the Military she went to school and received her Teachers Certificate in Mathematics and taught Algebra and Geometry at South Park High School for 22 years until her Lung Disease became unmanageable and her body just could not function anymore. She was teaching classes hooked up to an Oxygen bottle and a nasal canula . Now she is the Head of the Tonawanda Homeless Task Force and is in the Process of finding Homes and shelter for Homeless Vets and Homeless Citizens in the NorthTowns. She is also responsible for collecting over 700 Bicycles for 716 Wheels for workers campaign. She is non-stop , Wonderful person whe goes out of her way to help those in need. She really deserves of a new car.

Christian Colosi

Military: Army

Chris is THE strongest person I know. After his service in the Army, Chris developed PTSD. For several years, he turned to substances to help him deal with his debilitating symptoms, and one day he almost took his own life. I thank God everyday that his attempt was interrupted. Since then, Chris has worked with mental health professionals to help him gain and maintain sobriety. Everyday, I see him utilizing skills he’s learned in therapy to help manage his symptoms. Unfortunately even after years of therapy, I continue to hear him scream in his sleep some nights, and I can’t imagine the horrors he continues to experience. Despite this, he shows up and makes sacrifices everyday for our family. He’s always wanted a truck but has not been able to afford one because he’s always putting our three children and their needs first. I just love him so much, and he is truly an inspiration. It would be amazing to see him win.

Jordan King

Military: Army

Jordan is a disabled veteran and served multiple combat tours in Afghanistan from 2013-2016. He left the army to take care of his daughter who was born with a congenital diaphragmatic hernia while stationed in Germany. Jordan gave up a lot of time to the military and continued civilian contracting jobs oversees once his daughter was stable to continue to support his family. He gave up his vehicle about a year ago to save money for his growing family. With twins due in November 2024, their family could really use another vehicle. I couldn’t think of someone more deserving.

Richard Hartung

Military: Armu

My brother, Richard Hartung, was drafted at an early age. He was stationed in Thailand with the army base that housed oil tankers for US planes and bombers that were shelling North Vietnam. He was exposed to Agent Orange, developed and almost died from amoebic dysentery. He was later stationed in the US working with the army brass in Utah. All his life since he has suffered from the debilitating effects of the war. Originally turning to drugs and alcohol to mask his pain and rejection by father, he turned his life around by going to the VA for help. His shoulder, knee and hip joints had undergone surgical repair and now received infusions for his rheumatoid arthritis that attacks all his joints. Married but now separated, he and his wife lost two pregnancies. They adopted a child and raised her with love and care. He is the proud grandparent of 3 children through his adopted daughter, Emily. And a wonderful brother to me and my family and his brothers and sisters.

Stephen Landrigan

Military: Navy

I need a car to get my daily normal activity of life done my car broke down

Eric Schoenhals

Military: Airforce

Eric Schoenhals is a selfless patriot that has dedicated his career and life to serving those who can’t serve and protecting our freedoms. Serving as a nuclear misslear underground quietly protecting all Americans on a daily basis through nuclear deterrence.

James Cornelius

Military: Army

My Dad served his country in the Army. He went to Vietnam, where he sadly lost people he knew. Like so many other Vietnam combat veterans, he wasn't thanked for his service or sacrifice in those years. Only in the last 23 years (since 9-11-01) were these courageous men and women recognized for their loss, duty, sacrifice, and courage. My Dad is selfless, giving, and my personal hero. He's done so many wonderful things for my husband and I. He's an amazing person who's been through so many trials and tribulations. I'd love to nominate him, because he deserves it! Thank you

Matthew Morris

Military: Marine Corps

Greetings, Since medically separating from the Marine Corps in 2023 due to a motorcycle wreck Matthew has suffered severe PTSD from the accident. The trauma was so severe that for months it was extremely difficult for him to operate a vehicle. Now, over a year after the accident, through the support of our family, seeking professional help and following the birth of our daughter, my family requires a vehicle. For the last year, we were able to live in the city without a vehicle but are being forced to move out due to rising rent prices. I am also a permanently disabled Navy veteran and we would be sharing the vehicle both for work and the transportation of our 4-month-old daughter. A vehicle would allow us to regain our independence, get better jobs, support our new daughter and overcome the challenges that come with limited mobility. Vehicle need: 2 adults, 1 infant (4 months) Vehicle request: Four wheel drive as we are moving to rural Texas

Ebony Kusmierski

First Responder: Buffalo fire depratment

I would be honored to nominate my wife, Ebony Kusmierski. Not only is she a USAR veteran, but she is now currently a Buffalo Firefighter. Her life has been dedicated to selfless service to her community. She has never asked what was in it for her, but, what more can she do to help her community. Her spare time is dedicated to being the head of the PTA at BuffSci charter school (Clare St), as well as going to the gym to make sure she is in peak condition for the citizens of Buffalo. She has never had good luck with vehicles. Constant repairs have taken its toll financially on her. I just wish she could depend on her vehicle as confidently as those around her depend on her.

Donald Genovese

First Responder: Police

He has over 35 years of law enforcement experience and retired from the Buffalo Police and still serves as a Canisius University Police Officer and teaches at the Police academy and he also really needs a new truck

Stephen Rogers

Military: Desert Storm/Desert Shield Disbaled War Veteran Marines

Greetings my name is Nickeisha Rogers and I'd like to nominate my Husband Stephen Rogers. Even if it's his last he'll give to help another person, child, woman, neighbour, elder and especially another Veteran. He's over come so much through his severe struggles with PTSD, Depression and anxiety and wants to helps. He served in the Marines during the gulf War on a battle ship due to his heart failure and other conditions from serving he's been unable to work full time but has such a big heart for people and to still serve which has never stopped him. He's returned back to school to study to become a Reverend so he can start a non profit that will help other Veterans in need. He truly stands by the Marine creed of leaving no man nor woman behind. He's nicknamed "Mr Rogers Neigbourhood" because he looks out for everyone in need from helping Vietnam and Korean war Veterans who are in out neighbour's with meals etc. He's in great need of a van to help more Deep Gratitude. We appreciate you

Richard Ball jr.

Military: Msgt Air Force Security Forces

Richard is in his 22nd year in the Air Force National Gaurd. He served in Iraq and several spots in Saudi Arabia. He joined because of 911 and continues to serve as well as being a Major with the Buffalo Veterans Hospital police force. He gives respect to All,and is humble about his accomplishments. He continues to preform above and beyond in all areas.

Brad Cirillo

Military: Marines

My husband is the most selfless and helpful person I know. Despite what he’s been through both in combat and in day to day life, he’s always putting others needs before his own. He has done so much for our country and is truly passionate about his time spent in the United States Marine Corps. I can’t think of anyone more deserving of this than him.

James Carrig

Military: Army E4 Wheel vehicle mechanic 8/72-8/75

Jim feels privileged to have served his country and is very proud of his time in the Army.. To me, he embodies a soldier and veteran. Jim is always willing to help anyone in need. He gives platelets every two months faithfully. Jim is a true patriot and really deserves recognition.

David Gil Martinez

Military: Army

I would to nominate my wonderful husband and partner. He served this Country with honor and dedication.

SFC Denise Puskar

Military: Army

I am nominating her for She is currently active in the Army and is a recruiter also she is the current commander for Post 59 American Legion... she is a active with the Post and Auxiliary too. Is an all around wonderful person!. She really made me feel welcome when I joined the legion.. is a true American!! She doesn't know I nominated her 🙂

Jewel Weekley

Military: Navy

.Jewel Weekley is a veteran of the U.S. Navy. Not only has she served her country, but after her service, became a nurse. She is a mother of four who works hard to take care of her children and work full-time and more to provide for her family. Her husband Devon is also a veteran of the U.S. Navy. Jewel is a hard worker, always advocating for her patients in the hospital, caring for them as if they were her own family. She's a dedicated mom as well, always making time in her busy work schedule to make it to hockey games, baseball games, and spend quality time with her children. She spent a period of time as a travel nurse as well, travelling back and forth from areas such as Jamestown and Rochester to see her family but also work in some of the shortest staffed areas during the pandemic. She is a blessing to her coworkers and patients, a team player. I cannot think of a more deserving candidate, who I believe qualifies as both a veteran and a first responder.

Colter Meabon

First Responder: USMC Veteran, Patrol Deputy, SWAT OPERATOR, Certified Bomb Technician

I am nominating my husband because he is truly my hero. He suffered great loss as a child and overcame a very unstable childhood. He served as a 0311 in the USMC RESERVES while attending college and the sheriffs academy. He started as a part time deputy while still serving and now has been full time for 5 years and is a certified bomb tech as well as a certified swat operator. My husband is selfless and hardworking. We only have a family vehicle and he does not have a vehicle of his own and we are outgrowing our small Subaru with another baby on the way. Though he seems rough around the edges, my husband would do anything for anyone. He’s sacrificed so much for our country, our community, and his family- and overcame so many hardships- he deserves a new vehicle so much.

Tyler Cirillo

Military: US Marines

I'm nominating my son, Tyler Cirillo who is currently serving his 4 year term in the US Marines as he is currently stationed in Washington DC . I feel he deserves a new car for his devotion and dedication to serving his country especially is these rough times that we are going through ...

Russell Burton

Military: Navy

Russ is an incredibly hard-working man who owns and operates a small business, and he never does much of anything for himself. His focus is always on others. He provides every day for his family and is known for his caring and giving nature. He cherishes being a husband, father and Papa to his grandkids. He loves cars and worked on racecars for many years, and he deserves a win like this!

Ronald Shanks

Military: Navy

I’m nominating my dad, Ronald Shanks because he always puts others first. Right now he has a 2009 Hummer that is in poor condition. He is 83 years old and still works 3 days a week at Enterprise by the airport to make some extra money and he enjoys working there because he has lots friends. It’s very hard for him to make the trip to work recently because of the condition of his car. He can’t afford to buy a new car even with his job. He always does for others and is very active in the community. He loves to drive and watch car shows! It would make him so happy to have a car so he can continue to do what he loves most, drive.

Suzanne Tofthagen

Military: USMC

I want to nominate my friend, Suzanne Tofthagen, to win a car. She is an amazing, giving person. She has had some hard times and yet she continues to get right back up. Right now she drives for Uber. I would love for to win a car so she can continue to make money with an awesome Basil vehicle and doing something she loves. Thank you!

Jason Capone

Military: Navy

My husband is the most help and courageous person I have ever met. He would give you his last dollar then go hungry himself. I feel he should be nominated because he would do anything for anyone at any time.

Anthony Balestrieri

Military: Army

I am nominating my brother Tony because I can’t think of a better person who deserves this. He was in the reserves and when 9/11 happened decided he needed to be full time. He went to NY city to help with the clean up, and shortly after to invade Iraq. He eventually got medically discharged due to an injury he still struggles with today. After coming home he was awarded the bronze star for his heroism while over seas.He also went on to get an economics degree from Buffalo state college. Today he lives a humbled life in Amherst NY with his girlfriend never having any children. I think every solder deserves so much more then they have gotten for the things they have gone through. But today I nominate my bother Tony Balestrieri. Thank you Patricia Weiglein

Leo Neumeier

Military: Air force

His truck just is beat up guy would give you the shirt off his back

Ian Walton

First Responder: Police; US Marshal

I am writing to enthusiastically nominate my brother, Ian. As a U.S. Marshal, he embodies the values of hard work, dedication, and service to both his country and his community in an exemplary manner. Throughout his tenure as a U.S. Marshal, Ian has consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty. His unwavering commitment to upholding the law and ensuring the safety of citizens has been nothing short of remarkable. Whether it's tracking down fugitives, protecting witnesses, or executing warrants, he approaches every task with unparalleled professionalism and determination. What truly sets Ian apart is his deep-rooted sense of duty to his community. He understands that the work of a U.S. Marshal extends far beyond the confines of the courtroom or the field. He actively engages with local residents, listens to their concerns, and works tirelessly to address them. He is a leader, a role model and an inspiration to our family, friends and community!

Rich Qualey

First Responder: State Police

My brother is a quiet everyday hero. From family to work he is one of the most humble people I know. He works many hours in law enforcement while raiding two beautiful children who themselves are busy with sports and life. His wife Maureen is also retired law enforcement and is just as humble as Rich. I nominate Rich because he follows in the footsteps of our father, Ed. A retired State Trooper and former Chair of the CJ Department at Hilbert College. Rich embodies the true essence of a good guy, a respectable police officer, deeply rooted in the family name and philosophy of service to others. Rich often takes on projects with work and in everyday life. My dad calls this “ Qualey-ing”… meaning always ready to help when needed. Rich was a first responder in NYC during 9-11. He had first hand experience with the awful aftermath of that day. He has held many position within the State Police and often in leadership roles. He is an adjunct instructor among his many other hats he wears.

Joseph Milosich

First Responder: Captain

During Covid we defeated all odds and purchased our own property after renting in the Town of Tonawanda for 15 years. Having a difficult time getting our business back on the map from the pandemic devotion Captain Joe assisted us back on the map and allowed us to do National Night Out with all our Service Men and Service Women that have all kept us safe while we have been in business. We are forever grateful for our Community Services Bureau Officer, Captain Joe Milosich

Andrew Kornacki

Military: Army

Andy continues to serve as a dedicated volunteer with the Veterans of Foreign Wars, embodying the values of integrity, duty, and selfless service. His unwavering commitment to giving back to the veteran community is evident through active participation in numerous initiatives that support our nation's heroes and their communities. Esprit de corps and respect for fellow veterans shine through in every interaction, fostering a sense of camaraderie and mutual support. A devoted husband and father of four, Andy balances family responsibilities with an impressive propensity to serve others, demonstrating an inspiring level of dedication and compassion. With an unwavering dedication to serving those who have served our country deserves recognition and appreciation, he truly exemplifying the values of compassion and generosity.

Jessie Wollek

Military: Army

Jessie is Purple Heart recipient from 2012 where he was injured in the line of duty in southern Afghanistan, he is a father of two and a caring husband and trying to provide all he can with what limited income the VA and Social Security provide.

Rob Weiskerger

First Responder: Sunset Bay Fire Chief

Just received award for firefighter of the year. He was also severely burned from the Tri-County Golf Coarse fire. Him and another guy went in but the the roof collapsed on him while he was rescuing his partner. His helmet melted and so did his coat. He got 3rd degree burns. He is also part of the FAST Team around our area in Chautauqua County. Always going above and beyond for not only his communities but other communities around us. https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=n0AV_NACCo0#bottom-sheet Have pics of his helmet and jacket. https://chautauquatoday.com/mobile/news/details.cfm?clientid=25&id=356180

Justin Goulette

Military: Marine Corps

Justin is an outstanding young man with good values. Served his country with honors then attended Brockport College and obtained his Bachelors Degree in Computer Science. He always puts others first; he was married in 2020, purchased a house in 2023 then found room in their new home for two rescue dogs Ginger and Bella. Justin and his wife Michelle are now a one car family due to the high housing cost, Justin gave up his car in order to be able to afford everything for him and his wife, who is attending the University at Buffalo. He is genuinely a courteous, friendly and generous person.

Brian DiStasio

First Responder: Correctional Officer

I am nominating my husband Brian because of all he does for our family. We have struggled the past 4 years trying to have a baby. Even with him working long hours trying to make extra money so we could save up for IVF. We still were unsuccessful. My husband and I are now currently fostering a 5 month old little girl and are hoping to adopt one day. Brian has gone beyond what is expected to make my dreams of becoming a mother a reality. He deserves something special for all he does for our family.

Dominic Schrock

First Responder: EMT-Firefighter

Dominic has selflessly given of himself to help others in need. He joined the Ransomville Volunteer Fire Company 5 years ago and has continuously responded to any call that comes in for fire, first aid, car accident, welfare check, etc. He works full-time and often has to be on the road for his job before 6 am, and even with this early schedule, he doesn't hesitate to respond to a call that may take all night and have just enough time to shower, change and go to work. Dominic recently was honored for his service with the "Excellence in Patient Care" Award and the "Clinical Excellence Commendation" by Mt. St. Mary's Hospital. These awards speak volumes to the concern for others that Dominic has and always exudes. Just a week ago he attended a concert at Darien Lake when an individual suddenly collapsed and he jumped into action to assist. He would be so grateful to receive a vehicle to actually help him with his daily commutes and most importantly, his response to emergency calls.

Marvin Hall

Military: Army

Marvin, is my older brother. He was injured in 2005 in Iraq. He is disabled and retired from the military. For the last 6 years Marvin will drive the kids (Diff age/grade) from the neighborhood to and from school. He shovels pathways for the elderly, helps the younger kids with activities and events. I don’t know how to repay him he never wants anything in return. Recently his truck went bad and he’s saving for a dp. If he is lucky to be chosen I believe he will be elated.

David Glab

First Responder: He is a correctional officer

He works very hard to take care of our prisons and the inmate he drives back and fourth to almost Syracuse every time he is off because he also takes care of mom and dad I am not sure if being a correctional officer is considered Our first responder but if it is please con Consider him most young people don’t have a heart has good as him thank you

Jack Jones

Military: Army

Jack is a very caring and giving soul. Whenever there is a need in the neighborhood, Jack is there. We moved up to Buffalo a few years after our son with disabilities passed at 15 to be with our 29 year old and our granddaughter then 2 months later our son was killed in a motorcycle accident. Rather than give up after losing our son and his best friend, Jack stepped up further to help others and be the male influence to our granddaughter.

Brian Evancho (JR)

Military: Air Force

I feel like he should be nominated because he always puts everyone first and never himself . He always goes above and beyond for his family, friends and even strangers. He also just became a father this year (april 28th, 2024), he would be so surprised if he won!! He has been in the Air force for 15 - going on 16 years this year.

Donald Snell

First Responder: Volunteer Fireman

Don has been a volunteer for 28 years with the kenilworth fire company. Out of the 28 year Don spent 14 years running the fire prevention program. Don has given up plenty of family event to serve the fire department in various active. Don is always ready to respond when ever the fire tones go off. The call could be for a fire or simply CO detector going off.

Michael Barone

Military: U.S. Marine Corps

Michael Barone served honorably in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1978-1982. His MOS was aviation maintenance, specializing in helicopter hydraulics. After the military, Mike went to school for computer repair and worked for Wang Laboratories from 1984 until they declared bankruptcy in 1992. Michael then decided to follow in his father's footsteps and went into construction/home remodeling. He also worked part time nights at UPS. Michael has had a long struggle with drug addiction, but he is currently sober and doing very well at a VA Rehab facility. He is due to come home August 1, 2024 and will be living at the Altamont House which is a VA transitional housing facility. Michael gave up his apartment and sold his truck before putting himself into rehab. To help him maintain the sobriety that he has worked so hard to achieve, it will be essential to have a vehicle for work and to get himself to daily meetings as well as utilizing the gym at the Veteran One Stop Center.

Melissa Brewer

Military: Army

I am nominating my mom, who is a veteran of the US army who entered service right after 9-11. She served with the best of her ability until she was honorably discharged due to injuries acquired while serving. She took care of the us kids the best way she could even though things didn't necessarily work out as planned. She struggled, but always put us first even at the cost of her own mental health, but never made us feel like it was our fault. It has taken the last ten years of being apart to be reunited but she never gave up hope. I never forgot how inspiring she was and even joined the Army myself. I was soon discharged while in AIT due to an injury. I moved in my Nana's house a little less than a year after that, and my Mom is helping me get to my appointments and other things that I need to get to. She deserves this vehicle because she always puts others first and soon she may not be able to take care of her own needs to get to her appointments without it.

Melissa Brewer

Military: US Army

I am a 45 year old disabled veteran who, yes is nominating myself. My vehicle was repossessed after my bank account were hacked and even after making payment arrangements and made good on those arrangements, the loan company was not willing enough to work with me demanding payment in full which I could not do at that time, and so my credit took a nose dive and cannot get another loan. I live in a rural area where there is no public transportation access to buy food or even make it to health appointments, so a vehicle is a necessary commodity. As many veterans across this country I continue in limbo waiting for the VBA (Veterans Benefits Administration) to get my hearing date. I finish this off by saying to my fellow nominees, Thank you for your service.

Zaxhary Napora

Military: Navy

Zachary spent 8 years in the US Navy, did multiple deployments, and had planned to have a career in the navy. He was medically separated due to injuries sustained during his time in the military and has moved back home to WNY since. A new vehicle would be life changing for his start of a new life here at home.

Melissa Brewer

Military: Army

I am nominating my mother. She takes care of me and my daughter and making sure we need to get where we need to go, but without a vehicle that has gotten a lot harder since she has to borrow others vehicles all the time even to get to take care of her own needs such as buy food and got the doctor. She does not live where where there is any public transit so a car in absolutely necessary.