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Veteran in dire need receives wheelchair ramp from local vets

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DAVENPORT, Iowa – In July, Jerry Sparks had his wheelchair lift stolen off the back of his truck on 4th Street.  To this day, the person who stole the lift is still a mystery.

In the meantime, Sparks was in dire need of a new wheelchair ramp.  Luckily, a helping hand wasn’t too far away – thanks to Facebook Marketplace.

“When I saw it on Marketplace, where they make ramps, I sent them a message,” remembers Sparks.

And that hand happened to be another local veteran, Jeff Godines.

“The one we are installing now, we installed in May for another veteran who unfortunately had a stroke and is in an assisted living home now,” explains Godines, “So, the family gave it back so we could give it to another veteran to use it.”

This is the fourth ramp Godines and his crew installed this summer.  For a lot of veterans, these ramps are not cheap.

“A lot of ramps like these ones cost up to $5,000 to $7,000, and a lot of families can’t afford them,” says Godines.

Godines is part of the Combat Veterans Motorcycle Association - a group that has one mission.

“We miss that comradery and that brotherhood, so being able to give back to those guys that went before us,” says Godines.

Sparks happiness is now restored, all thanks to one vet helping another.

Next Friday, Sparks is getting a new scooter from the VA.  He plans to go to the mall with his wife for his first trip.

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