2016 Veteran Benefit Car Show - Vet, Corvettes & Other Classics

On June 25th, OPERATION: COME H.O.M.E., along with Woodside Bible Church - Troy Veterans and Military Ministry, hosted its 1st Annual Veterans Benefit Car Show - Vets, Corvettes & Other Classics.  Co-sponsors, Greg Thomas, Ram's Horn of Rochester Hills and LTC (ret) Rob Ells, Roush Enterprises of Livonia, MI helped create the success it was by generously providing the much appreciated and required funding and marketing support needed to put on such an event.  The event received a vast amount of attention via newspaper articles, advertisements, radio spots and even two separate local news station, Channel 7 interviews. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9S1slWvxNRQ 

http://www.wxyz.com/video/1738326034/2016-veteran-benefit-car-show

Along with Co-host, Woodside Bible Church - Troy Veterans and Military Ministry, OPERATION: COME H.O.M.E. was blessed by dozens of volunteers to help set up, register show cars, cook, inform guests, etc. while Pastor Vince Messina, Woodside Bible Church Congregational Care Pastor and Dan Broihan, OPERATION: COME H.O.M.E. Executive Director were able to meet many of the show car owners as well as spectators that wanted to see some real Detroit Muscle and support our Veterans.

With the success and excitement that this first show provided, this event is destined to become an annual favorite while helping fund the future of Veteran housing in the Metro Detroit Area!

Thanks to all who participated!

For a look at some of the cars and exhibits, please click the link where you can view and download your favorite photos:

 

 

 

In The Beginning...

As a non-Veteran, the most frequent question I get from the people I meet is “So how did this whole thing start?”  The simple answer is God called me to do it, but that would not give “…the rest of the story”. 

The story starts with at a “Membership” class at Woodside Bible Church in Troy, MI, hosted by Pastor Brian Wood.  My wife and I watched a video produced by I Like Giving, regarding a homeless Veteran in Dallas Texas.  The video was titled “I Like Veteran”  http://ilikegiving.com/films/i-like-veteran .  As I watched the video, I became increasingly uptight, asking myself, “How can we treat our Veterans with such indifference?”.  I also questioned God as to how he could allow this to happen to those that defend this God blessed and inspired country.

My thoughts turned to my late father-in-law, a 29 year Navy Veteran, who retired as Master Chief and formerly in charge of the aircraft carrier USS Midway’s computer system.  He was forced to retire just shy of 30 years, keeping him from receiving his 30 year pension and never really received any meaningful assistance from the VA or related government agencies. 

Several weeks went by with the video still echoing in my head, but the frustration all changed on a routine drive home from work, while listening to one of my favorite Christian Detroit radio stations.  A new song filled my car… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b_RjndG0IX8   “I woke up this morning, Saw a world full of trouble now, Thought, how’d we ever get so far down, How’s it ever gonna turn around, So I turned my eyes to Heaven, I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”  Matthew West was singing my exact sentiments!  I listened further… Mr. West went on…So, I shook my fist at Heaven, Said, ‘God, why don’t You do something?’…..He said, ‘I did, I created you’”. Wow, that thought never crossed my mind, but I said “I will…Do Something!”, so I did…and OPERATION: COME H.O.M.E. was born as a newly created Domestic Nonprofit Corporation, with an official birthday of Veteran’s Day, November 11, 2014!

But I still had one last question for God…”Why me?”  He answered me with a simple reminder… “If it weren’t for the US Military, you (nor your two brothers) would be here” I then realized that I, in fact am here directly because of a US Soldier.  During the “Occupation”, a soldier told my WWII generation German father, to get to Detroit, where he could use his Tool and Die trade skills to “…earn his fortune!”.  So he did, immigrating in 1955 to Canada, calling for his then girlfriend, to join him here, which she did.

Marrying in Windsor, just before moving to Chicago he and my mom lived in downtown Chi-Town, giving birth to twin boys (on my dad’s birthday), August 6, 1961, then moving to Detroit in 1964 were my dad accepted a Superintendent position at Future Products in Clawson, MI.

So with that, I must say “Thank you!” to my true heroes…