Disabled Navy Veteran Shows County Executive Odell His ‘New’ Wheels


MaryEllen Odell
Putnam County Executive
(845) 808-1001

Disabled Navy Veteran Shows County Executive Odell His ‘New’ Wheels

A disabled Navy Veteran who resides in Carmel was recently presented with the keys to a ‘new’ car through the efforts of several fellow veterans. Patrick Brady, who grew up in Brewster and now lives in the Putnam County Veterans Home on Drewville Road in Carmel, received the keys to a totally refurbished 2005 Chevrolet Impala at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 15 at the VFW Post 4927 in Centereach, NY.

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veterans and tea  pot 001



“Here is a young man who has given so much to his country and who now is receiving, through the efforts of his fellow Putnam veterans and the Vehicles for Veterans program, the priceless gift of independence,” said Putnam County Executive MaryEllen Odell as she congratulated Brady. “Moments like these are what make the Season of Giving truly memorable,” she said.

Vehicles for Veterans is an offshoot of the National Auto Body Council (NABC)’s Recycled Rides program where damaged vehicles are refurbished through the donated time and services of auto body shops, insurers, paint suppliers and part vendors. It was started by Suffolk County resident and VFW Post 4927 member Dennis Sullivan who started networking ed with local businesses in March of 2010.

Last September, when Brewster VFW 672 life member Art Hanley heard Brady comment about wanting a car of his own some day, he put the wheels in motion and contacted Putnam’s Director of Veterans Affairs Karl Rohde. In turn, Rohde called his friend Sullivan who said there were nine available vehicles in Suffolk County. All Brady had to do was fill out an application form and explain in an essay how having a car would improve his quality of life.

A panel of judges selected Brady as one of the nine recipients and Hanley drove him to Long Island to fill out the necessary paperwork on Oct. 27. The nine vehicles would be turned over to their new owners at a ceremony scheduled for Nov. 10.

Then Superstorm Sandy struck. The ceremony was cancelled and Brady was left waiting to hear when he would receive his car.

Last week, he was notified that Dec. 15 was the big day.

Several service organizations added to the Season of Giving by donating gasoline gift cards to Brady as well.