Driven to help others

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Mike Goodrich shows off his new Honda Ridgeline, a vehicle he will use to help facilitate his passions for art therapy and helping other veterans.

TrueCar provides retired soldier with new vehicle, supports DAV mission

DAV life member Mike Goodrich will be able to continue serving his fellow veterans thanks to the new Honda Ridgeline donated to him through TrueCar’s DrivenToDrive program.

DrivenToDrive was created to help injured veterans regain the freedom they have fought for, by helping them get back behind the wheel of a vehicle.

“Driving is an expression of freedom and independence,” said Lucas Donat, chief brand officer at TrueCar. “Helping injured veterans such as Mike, those that have sacrificed so much for our freedom, to drive again is a cause close to our heart. We’re honored to be working with DAV and joining them in their mission to support more victories for veterans.”

During one of his tours in Afghanistan in 2012, a rocket landed near Goodrich’s base camp, ending his military career. He sustained a traumatic brain injury that affected his speech, motor skills and memory, as well as a leg injury that causes him pain while doing everyday activities such as driving.

The Army veteran’s inpatient recovery was a long, drawn out process, which lasted four years. Goodrich tried several types of therapy to help with his post-traumatic stress; however, many traditional treatments and medications didn’t work for him. Instead, he turned to art therapy and finally found relief.

After getting the help he needed, Goodrich and his wife decided to dedicate their lives to helping other veterans rehabilitate and recover through art therapy.

He now sets up art shows around the Washington, D.C., area that advocate for the use of art therapy for veterans and trauma victims. His military-themed art has garnered national acclaim. Goodrich will use his new vehicle to help transport his art and veterans to these shows.

“Having a new vehicle that I can rely on is a tremendous gift to me, but it’s also going to make my work [with other veterans] easier as well,” said Goodrich. “I would not be able to reach and help as many people without the help of this new vehicle.”

TrueCar began working with DAV in 2017 and selected DAV as their exclusive veterans service organization partner in 2018, donating $50,000 to support DAV’s mission.

“DAV is grateful to partner with TrueCar and their DrivenToDrive program,” said DAV National Adjutant Marc Burgess. “Awarding a vehicle is a special way to recognize the sacrifices a veteran made and dramatically improve their quality of life.”


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