Veterans Day holds a special place in Larry Vigil’s heart. Vigil served his country well in Vietnam. While in service, he was exposed to Agent Orange, which left him battling cancer. He also suffers from PTSD, and he receives treatment for both of these conditions. But instead of being honored for his service on Veterans Day 2015, Vigil had his only means of transportation stolen.
A man named Randall Snow and a juvenile stole Vigil’s car and led authorities on a chase through three counties. The chase ended with the car totaled. With only liability insurance, Vigil received no money after the incident. The car was his only means to get back and forth to his doctor visits — which were numerous for a wounded vet with cancer. The two thieves had essentially taken away Vigil’s only hope for livelihood.
After hearing the story, Mike Shaw – owner of several car dealerships throughout Denver — decided to step up and offer Vigil a new vehicle.
Shaw had worked his way through college while being enlisted in the U.S. Army Reserves. His father served time in Vietnam. According to Shaw, veterans have gone through enough already by putting their lives on the line. He believes his random act of kindness and generosity was the least he could do.
Mike Shaw spends a lot of his time and passion honoring and helping servicemen and women who live in his area. He knows firsthand how demanding the job is.
Each year, Shaw holds a military service appreciation luncheon at the Broadmoor luxury hotel in Colorado Springs. The luncheon hosts more than 1,600 people from all branches and ranks of the military. Individuals come from as far as Washington, D.C. to attend the event, and Shaw foots the entire bill.
With his dedication, it should be no surprise that Shaw stood up to help Vigil. Teaming up with FOX31 Denver Problem Solvers, Mike Shaw invited Vigil’s granddaughter to bring him the dealership. Much to Vigil’s surprise, he had a car waiting for him. Shocked and touched, the two heroes of the community shook hands. Local businesses and business owners often are the lifeblood of any given community, and many step up to lend a hand to those in need, such as struggling veterans.
Shaw’s kindness and similar acts of compassion demonstrate how people can turn unfortunate circumstances into good deeds towards veterans.Whizzco