Former Missouri Car Dealership Owner Gives Away Cars to Veterans

Lisa Steuer McArdle
· 3 min read
Terry Franz used to own a car dealership in Kansas City,
. Now, he is still involved in automobiles, but he's doing something much different. Franz is the founder of Cars 4 Heroes, a nonprofit that seeks to help
According to the
Herald Bulletin
, Terry Franz and his organization have given away thousands of vehicles to veterans. This giving spirit has earned him the title "Car Santa."
Former Missouri car dealership owner Terry Franz and his organization have given away thousands of vehicles to veterans.

Cars 4 Heroes gives back

For active veterans, a car can make a major difference. Terry Franz's work with Cars 4 Heroes is based on this belief. A new car may not solve every problem, but it can help a veteran find their place after their service.
Each year, Cars 4 Heroes receives about 15,000 applications. They then give away 300 cars a year to those who need them.
In addition to giving cars to veterans, Cars 4 Heroes also accepts applications from other heroes. This includes active duty service members, first responders, and families of heroes.
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The story of Missouri’s Car Santa

Terry Franz's work was not always the non-profit it is today. Back when Franz was the owner of a car dealership, he hosted a promotional giveaway. The giveaway was themed after Christmas in July, which gave him the Car Santa nickname.
But after doing the promotion for a while, he realized that he was receiving applications from veterans who needed vehicles more than anyone else. So, Franz decided to shift the focus of the program. This is when Christmas in July became Cars 4 Heroes, but the title of Car Santa would remain.
For the last 15 years, Cars 4 Heroes has focused on giving hope to veterans through new vehicles. As the non-profit has continued to give away cars, Franz and his team have extended beyond Kansas City, Missouri where they are headquartered.
While Franz is pleased with the growth that the organization has experienced, he wants to continue growing to help more veterans.

Cars 4 Heroes in Anderson, Indiana

In late August, Car Santa and Cars 4 Heroes will go on the road to Anderson, Indiana for an event at the town's Paramount Theatre. This event is a collaboration between the Paramount and Cars 4 Heroes to provide entertainment and honor veterans.
During the event, two veterans will be honored with new vehicles provided by Cars 4 Heroes. The Paramount Theatre is using this event to both give back to those who have served and to provide entertainment to the community.
There will also be live music provided by California Surf, a band that features former members from the Beach Boys.

Giving back

Cars are more than just modes of transportation. They can open doors and increase mobility, and this can be important for veterans who may be trying to rebuild after service. Terry Franz earned the nickname Car Santa for dealership giveaways, but for the last 15 years, his Cars 4 Heroes program has helped veterans.
Cars 4 Heroes helps give wheels to veterans who need them. Veterans are also able to get
car insurance
coverage that can help fit their unique driving needs.
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