Shenandoah Valley Family Receives Vital and Reliable Transportation
A Shenandoah Valley family, forced to travel back and forth to the University of Virginia for their daughter's cancer treatment, is breathing a little easier on Friday.
A nonprofit organization and Valley Auto Group made sure the family had reliable transportation to get to and from those appointments.
The Fitzgerald family received a 2009 Hyundai Friday afternoon, free of charge.
Raegan Fitzgerald and her mother will be able to make that drive to UVA whenever they need to.
For the Fitzgerald family, the gift of a free car meant a whole lot more than a new set of wheels.
“It just feels so good knowing that we're gonna be able to cross the mountain and not have to worry about if the car is going to leave me on the side of the road,” said Tami Fitzgerald. “Raegan has her treatment doesn't end until April of 2020.”
16-year-old Raegan Fitzgerald has cancer, and getting from the Shenandoah Valley to UVA for treatment was a struggle.
"We were contacted by UVA Children's Hospital. One of the social workers there called and said they had a family that was in need,” said Sherri Golladay, Samuel’s Supper.
Samuel's Supper is an organization that helps families who have a child in a medical crisis and need short term help.
When they heard about Reagan’s story, Sherri Golladay started making phone calls.
Scott Simons, with Valley Auto Group, said, “When we heard that they couldn't make it to these appointments, our committee said we have to do something.”
“We can get them in a new car, safely driving up and down the road and back and forth to treatments in Charlottesville, it means a lot,” stated Spencer Golladay, Samuel’s Supper.
The Golladay’s, who started Samuel's Supper, understood how important this gift was. They started the nonprofit after their own son was diagnosed with cancer in 2015.
Sherri Golladay noted, “We know the stress of not making it to treatments. We know that if kids can't make it to their treatments that relapse rates are higher. We know that it affects their health not just in that moment but for years to come.”
As a surprise, the Valley Auto Group also took care of some of the taxes and signing fees, saving the Fitzgerald family $850.