Area Technical Programs Donate Recycled Rides

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Recycled Rides Mission:

Recycled Rides is a nationwide community service project whereby members of the National Auto Body Council (NABC) repair and donate recycled vehicles to families and service organizations in need, in their own communities. A “green” program highlighting vehicle and parts recycling, Recycled Rides recruits collision repairers, insurers, paint suppliers, parts vendors and others, to contribute in their own, yet synergistic ways.

TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Two families are riding around town in new sets of wheels thanks to area students.

The automotive collision repair programs with Washburn Technical Institute and Manhattan Area Technical College turned over the keys to the refurbished vehicles Thursday during a presentation at the Statehouse. The vehicles were donated through the Recycled Rides program.

Washburn Tech worked with the United Way of Greater Topeka and other organizations to choose Susan Clark for the gift, while MATC partners with the Wounded Warriors organization and found Master Sgt. Terry Montang.

It was an emotional day for both. Clark broke down in tears as the cover was pulled off the 2007 Kia Sportage she'll take home. Afterward, she literally jumped up and down and danced.

"I'm just so excited," she said. "Thank you so much."

Montang has served 31 years in the military, including several tours overseas. He says it's been stressful on his family. He says the donation wouldn't come at a better time - the transmission recently went out on their current vehicle and finances are tight.

"As a soldier, you don't really think about community because you move around so much, but then something like this happens and it stops you in your tracks," he said. "It reminds you the community still cares and still cares about the soldiers."

Gov. Sam Brownback joined in the presentations. They were made possible with the work of more than 60 students, instructors, business partners and American Family Insurance.

Washburn Tech will present another vehicle Friday.

Washburn Tech and MATC are the only education programs in the country designated as Recycled Ride training facilities. Recycled Rides is a national program through which members of the National Auto Body Council repair and donate recycled vehicles to people and families in need.


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