Northeast Ohio veterans awarded cars in recognition of their military service

Updated: Nov. 8, 2019 at 4:27 PM EST
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CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - These are the sentiments of three veterans who saluted our flag, three men who served our country to help keep us safe and free.

“This solves everything.”

“Other countries don’t treat their veterans like this.”

“There’s no words for it. It’s a great honor just to be a recipient.”

Because of their willingness to put their lives on the line for America, they get back.

Ohio National Guardsman, David Bowling gets a car.

Korean & Vietnam Army Veteran, John Butsko gets a car.

U.S. Army Veteran of Desert Storm, Oliver Sanders II gets a car.

“For me, myself it was difficult. I was very limited in the kinds of jobs I could look for or transportation to the job. I had to either walk or bicycle to the current job that I’m at.”

These gentlemen are among more than 600 military families across the country being honored as part of the Keys to Progress giveaways by Progressive Insurance. Several local companies refurbished the vehicles that will make a world of difference for the vets.

Bowling has a family of six; four children and a wife.

“It’s huge step for my family. We’ve made such progress lately. New jobs, new hobbies, new volunteer work and we are progressing in life and something like a vehicle breakdown really throws a wrench in all of that.”

Butsko is a man of few words, but he’s moved by the gift of a new vehicle.

“It’s something that I cherish and I’m really proud to be here.”

Butsko fought in both the Korean and Vietnam wars. He earned the right to be honored for his service, and as you can tell, he’s humbled by the loving gesture.

Bowling’s situation has been enhanced by his getting his new car.

“I’m driving to and from work both jobs every day. It’s close to two to three hours of driving every day on top of 16 hours of work. It’s nuts. I’ve got to have a reliable vehicle, but all that work is going to pay dividends one day.”

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