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Donated scooters available for Florida military veterans

Florida American Legion to distribute 11 scooters to veterans in need

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The American Legion Department of Florida reached out to News4Jax after receiving a generous donation of mobility scooters. The organization and its donors want to ensure the scooters get to Florida military veterans in need.  

Florida has the third largest population of veterans in the nation -- after California and Texas -- with more than 1.5 million, and more than 1.1 million of them are wartime veterans.

In all, the Florida Legion has 11 mobility scooters at its Orlando headquarters to be distributed to vets across the state. Ten scooters were donated by Jack Kump and his wife Joann Wheeler, and the 11th was donated by the vendor SpinLife. The selected recipients should know that the scooters come with a very special meaning -- in memory of two World War II veterans.

"The information that's most important to us is that the scooters are being donated in memory of two WWII vets who were very special people," said Jack Kump. "Joann's father, Robert I. Wheeler, and someone who, early in my career, was a mentor, Leonard F. Wedge. The scooters are being donated in honor of Randolph-Macon Academy in Front Royal, Virginia where I attended high school. But for the military influence, the discipline, esprit de corps, and the direction the school provided, my life would have probably taken a much less productive path."

Jack said he is also excited that SpinLife has added a scooter to the fleet, free of charge, so another veteran can benefit.

"It's that sort of commitment and generosity all companies should show to our vets," Jack said.

How to apply for a scooter

If you are a Florida veteran in need of one of these donated scooters, or you know someone who is, here is how to apply:

Florida veterans are asked to write a letter, or send an email explaining their personal need for the scooter. (The Florida Legion is asking for no phone calls, please.)

Mailing address:
The American Legion, Department of Florida
PO Box 547008
Orlando, FL 32854

Email address:
mail@floridalegion.org

Florida veterans must also provide proof of military service (DD214 Form.) The deadline for submission is Jan. 28, 2017.

Scooters will be distributed in February and are intended for use by the veteran who is chosen.

Those selected will need to arrange for pickup and delivery of the scooter at their own expense, however, the Florida Legion says a veteran's local post may be able to offer assistance (although this is not guaranteed.)