Steelers legend Rocky Bleier has always had a special place in his heart for military veterans, and that was on display once again when along with the Veterans Leadership Program he presented vehicles to two Pittsburgh veterans.
Bleier, who served in the U.S. Army in Vietnam early in his Steelers career, and the Veterans Leadership Program teamed with the National Auto Body Council Recycled Rides program to provide new vehicles to U.S. Army veteran Ryan Mueller and Anita Richmond, a U.S. Marine Corps veteran.
"I am so pleased to be able to present these cars to veterans in need of transportation," said Bleier. "I'm proud to work with Veterans Leadership Program, which identified these veterans and connected them with the NABC Recycled Rides program. It is a tribute to our community that we have organizations like them to take care of our veterans. I am very privileged to be able to help with this program. The NABC does this around the country throughout the year and gives away 300 cars to people in need, like single mothers and about 75 percent to veterans."
Mueller was walking two miles a day to work recently, and the vehicle will help him especially after suffering injuries in combat while serving in Iraq have him dealing with daily pain.
"It's been three or four months since I had a reliable vehicle, so I can only take a job that I can walk to," said Mueller. "Thanks to this, I have a job making twice as much money starting tomorrow because I now have transportation to get there. This will help me move forward in my life, get to work and go back to school to complete my masters to help other folks in need."
Richmond had been using public transportation recently to get to work because her previous car was too expensive to repair.
"This will help me maintain employment and take care of the simple daily things like grocery shopping," said Richmond. "I am forever grateful for this opportunity and very thankful that it's been made available to me. It is awesome that this program helps veterans when they need it."