Family’s Treasured Tucson Finds New Life as Habitat Donation
Jeanne bought a bronze 2009 Hyundai Tucson to see her daughter, Erica, through Tidewater Community College.
It was 2 years old at the time. Erica graduated and moved out. The Tucson was her ride or die. She met her husband, Steve. He drove it, too. They moved to suburban Philadelphia. The Tucson remained Erica’s wheels. They had a son and then a daughter. When they wanted to return home to visit family back, the Tucson made the trek down the Eastern Shore to Virginia.
Jeanne would be amused watching everyone pile out of the vehicle – her daughter and son-in-law, the two grandchildren and four dogs, two English setters, a Jack Russell and a rat terrier. Sometimes loads of baseball equipment would be in the back as Steve coached and his son, now college age, played. Somehow everybody and everything fit.
“The Tucson was almost like a fifth pet,” Jeanne says. “They would pack in there like sardines. And it just kept going like an old Timex watch.”
The Tucson surpassed 200,000 miles. Steve bought a new car.
“The Tucson ran better than his,” Jeanne said.
The Tucson’s longevity turned the entire family into a Hyundai one. In June, Erica and Steve broke down and bought a new Venue. Jeanne donated the Tucson to Habitat for Humanity Peninsula and Greater Williamsburg’s Cars for Homes program.
Every car donation supports Habitat’s efforts in Hampton, Newport News, Poquoson and Williamsburg in addition to the counties of Charles City, James City, New Kent and York. The local affiliate of the international nonprofit accepts cars, trucks, RV’s, vans, SUV’s, boats and motorcycles whether they run or not. Towing is free and donations may also be a tax deduction.
“We felt it was better to donate to Habitat to keep it living rather than having it put down in a junkyard,” Jeanne said. “It was a real sweet kiss goodbye to the car Erica loved so much.”
Vehicles donated to Habitat’s Cars for Homes program are sold or recycled to raise funds for the local homebuilding program, helping families build the stability and security an affordable home allows.