by Alexis Ann
On a sunny October afternoon, Max Monger of Saybrook, a veteran and single dad, drove away in his new 1999 Honda Accord compliments of Work Vessels for Vets (WVFV) with his three children. The car was purchased at Valenti Family Dealerships and the “spiffing up” was performed by Valenti gratis. Max spent 11 years in the Army serving in the 4th Infantry 166th Armor Division. Serving in the mid-east from 1999 – 2009 as a tanker, Max also served in West Africa and Liberia.
WVFV is an all-volunteer movement assisting returning veterans to begin their civilian careers or educational pursuits by acquiring and distributing the necessary start-up tools. Founded by John Niekrash, Noank with the gift of his fishing boat that began a commercial fishing career for a returning Iraq veteran, the foundation is expanding its outreach to other industries to assist our returning military.
“Our model is unique and based on a sustainable, “pay-it-forward” dynamic. We support veteran entrepreneurs so they can establish businesses that thrive, so they can then hire more veterans creating quality jobs and career opportunities, “ states John. Once the new business is profitable, WVFV becomes a beneficiary through contributions back into the organization including “gifts in kind.”