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This Christmas season, Shields of Hope along with the community will be helping to support and provide gifts for families battling cancer this holiday season. These are the stories of the families being helped.

 

Ottawa County Families

Shields of Hope will be supporting 6 families in Ottawa County this year!

Family #1 – Young Spring Lake parents raising their 2 and 4 year-old boys.  Mother of the family was diagnosed with Triple Negative Breast Cancer in October 2017.  This wonderful family is always working to help the community and now they could use some of that support!

Family #2 – This family is 1 of 3 families in Jamestown Township that we are honored to help.  The family consists of mom, dad and 4 children ages 7, 11, 15 & 18.  Their 11 y/o son was diagnosed with Leukemia in summer 2017 and this family has faced cancer diagnosis numerous times in the past years.  They support and volunteer in the community and are true public servants to everyone around them.

Family #3 – Our second Jamestown family is comprised of mom, dad and 3 children ages 5, 7 and 11. Their 7 year-old son was diagnosed with brain cancer in early 2017.  The community and family have rallied around the family but they could use some extra love, hope and encouragement this holiday season.

Family #4 – From Allendale, this family of 5 is made up of mom, dad and 3 children ages 13, 15 and 17.  Mom was diagnosed with Stage 4 Pancreatic cancer in early 2017.  The family is coming to terms that this is most likely their last Christmas together and would like to make some lasting memories together.

Family #5 – Our third Jamestown family is comprised of mom, dad and 4 children ages 3, 8, 16 and 17.  This family has faced numerous tragedies including a house fire in the recent years.   Their 3 year-old son was diagnosed with B Cell ALL earlier this year and has been fighting hard ever since!

Family #6 – The final Ottawa County family lives in Zeeland Township and is made up of mom, dad and 4 children (10 year-old twins, and a 13 and 14 year-old).  For the last three years one of the 10 year-olds fought Leukemia and in August 2017 he finished treatment!  The family is working hard to get back to a sense of normalcy and is active in the community.

 

Allegan County Families

Shields of Hope will be supporting 2 families in Allegan County this year!

Family #1 – Our first Allegan County family is from Shelbyville.  The family consists of parents, both Army Veterans, and two children ages 15 and 17.  Dad was diagnosed with Multi-Myeloma and is awaiting a Stem Cell Transplant.  Currently the family is preparing to move to a smaller house due to financial challenges that are a result of the cancer diagnosis.

Family #2 – Our second Allegan family is from Wayland.  This family of 7 consists of mom, dad, and 5 children ages 5, 7, 9, 11, and 15.  Their 5 year-old daughter was diagnosed with Leukemia in 2015 and relapsed in November 2016.  Due to the treatments the father has missed quite a bit of work.  His coworkers have rallied around him to cover his shifts but there is still a financial struggle they are facing.

 

Kent County Families

Shields of Hope will be supporting 3 families in Kent County this year!

Family #1 – The father of our first Kent County family recently gained his angel wings after battling Esophageal Cancer.  He leaves behind his loving wife and their 10 year-old son.  They fought together as a family and are in need of some extra love and support during their first holiday season without their loving father.

Family #2 – Our second Kent County family lives in Kentwood.  The family is made of mom, dad and 2 children ages 6 and 7.  Their father was diagnosed with Brain Cancer and is now unable to work to help provide basic needs for the family.  The family actively works to give back and hosts fundraisers for others in need and never questions why they were chosen to be on this journey.

Family #3 – Our third Kent County family lives in Grand Rapids.  A single mom to a 10 year-old boy is battling Colon Cancer.  She was diagnosed in May 2017 and is in need of support and extra encouragement during the holidays.

 

Muskegon County Families

Shields of Hope will be supporting 1 family in Muskegon County this year!

Family #1 – This Muskegon family of 7 is comprised of mom, dad and children ages 9, 10, 13, 16 and 17.  Mom was diagnosed with Stage 4 Breast Cancer in spring 2017.  Due to the mother’s illness only the father is working at this time.  Between treatments, running a household, and raising 5 children any extra support would be greatly appreciated during this difficult time.

 

If you would like to help out any of these families in need, please stop in any Auto Body Xperts location to grab a gift tag off the giving tree to help a family in need this holiday season.

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It’s that time of year again! Shields of Hope – Heroes Holiday is back!

Shields of Hope – Heroes Holiday is a local organization that supports several families that are struggling from cancer that could use some Holiday Cheer! Selected families will receive needed gifts delivered by the members of Shields of Hope. To help one of these families, please stop by any Auto Body Xperts locations and pick a tree ornament off of the giving tree to help support one of these families this Christmas. Everyone one who returns a tag with an item to any Auto Body Xperts location will be entered to win a Family Fun Package that includes a Celebration Cinema gift card, Craig’s Cruiser gift card, and a local restaurant gift card!

For more information, please visit: www.shieldsofhopewestmi.com/heroes-holiday/

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Locations:

  • 216 N 120th Ave, Holland
  • 3483 Highland Dr, Hudsonville
  • 126 Railroad St, Wayland
  • 9389 Riley St, Zeeland

This year, Auto Body Xperts had the honor of pairing up with the Holland Police Department to get Operation Polar Patrol up and running. Operation Polar Patrol is a Ice Cream Truck serving the Holland area!

Sgt. Matzen was the main individual who proposed and executed the idea of Operation Polar Patrol. He said, “It’s a non-complaint driven contact with the community. It’s about getting back to that service aspect. Most of the times, because we’re wearing uniforms, people don’t like to come up and talk to us. We want to build trust and make that connection. We want people to know what our characteristics and morals are.”

This summer was the first summer that Operation Polar Patrol was out in the community and throughout the summer they attended over 60 different events and served over 10,000 individuals!

Operation Polar Patrol has proven itself to be a huge success and has big plans in place for 2018.

 

For more information:

http://www.hollandsentinel.com/news/20170606/holland-police-unveil-new-polar-patrol-ice-cream-truck

 

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During the month of October, Auto Body Xperts had free pumpkins available to all kids and teenagers at all four locations. Kids of all ages stopped by to say hello and grab a pumpkin! During that time, we gave away 235 pumpkins! There was also a fun giveaway for adults too (because why should the kids be the only ones to have fun), adults had the opportunity to join a Facebook contest to win a dozen donuts from Post Family Farm! This year’s winner was Lindsey Doverhof!

 

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It’s that time of year, winter is right around the corner. Here are 5 Xpert tips to help prepare your vehicle for winter.

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First, always have a winter supply kit in your vehicle. In this kit, always have a flashlight, first-aid kit, a few blankets, change of warm clothes for the driver, few extra pairs of gloves, portable charger for your phone, bag of sand (for traction), winter boots, extra ice scraper, some high-energy snacks (like nuts or jerky), and a bottle of water. The winter supply kit is important in case of a slide off in winter to make sure you are well prepared to get yourself out or if you can’t due to extreme weather, to be able to call and wait for help.

Second, never have less than half a tank of gas in your vehicle at all times. In case of a slide off or traffic jam, you want to make sure you will have enough gas to get you through the situation.

Third, check your tire pressure and tread depth. With the snow and ice, it is important to make sure your vehicle has good traction on the roads. To check the tread on your tires, do the “lincoln test”. Insert a penny into your tire’s tread with the top of Lincoln’s head pointing inward toward the tire. If you can see all of Lincoln’s head, you need to replace the tire before winter weather begins.

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Fourth, check your vehicle’s fluid levels and make sure they are all full, especially engine coolant and antifreeze. The antifreeze will insure that your vehicle is running smoothly even during the cold winter times.

Finally, make sure your brake lights is working properly. In the winter weather, it takes longer for a vehicle to slow down so it is important that your brake lights are working properly to insure that the vehicles behind you have an ample amount of time to stop.

 

If unfortunately you are in an accident this winter, be sure to see Auto Body Xperts!