FARMVILLE, Va. – Turning over the key in his ‘86 F250, Nathan Everson can’t help but smile.
“It finally starts to feel like we’re getting back to normal,” he said.
Nearly two months after he and his family nearly lost their lives to a drunk driver on Route 122 in Bedford County, a community continues to show up for them.
“After the accident, the jeep was the next reliable vehicle we had and that was lost,” Everson said.
Nathan and his wife, Megan, haven’t been able to drive since the accident because of their injuries. Even if they could, they’re sharing one car.
When Josh Jones with Vet to Vet Vehicles heard their story, he knew that wouldn’t do.
“We gotta do something,” he said. “He said, ‘Well, he’s got his old truck that we can fix up and you can do this stuff to it.’ I said, ‘Let’s do it. Let’s get to it.’”
Jones builds vehicles for veterans and first responders, like Everson who’s a firefighter for the Randolph Volunteer Department.
He and the chief spent the last month restoring Nathan’s truck. They surprised him with the final product Friday.
“This is what completes it all for me when I get to meet the individuals,” Jones added. “When I meet the person, give them the vehicle and see the reaction on their face.”
Everson and his wife say it’s been a source of healing to have the truck back and running. They added that someday it will be their daughter’s.
“When the truck pulls into the driveway, we’ll know daddy’s home,” Megan said. “Nathan always said, even before the truck was fixed up, he’d give the truck to Avonlea.”
As for the jeep, they’re keeping it too. They plan to put it outside the fire department, where it will serve as a stark reminder of what can happen if you get behind the wheel drunk.
If you would like to support the family, you can donate to their GoFundMe here.