When a local man returned home from deployment on Monday afternoon, his father had a special gift waiting for him in the form of a brand new car. Paul Ware, a U.S. Marine MP and 2012 graduate of Lely High School, has been stationed with the 3rd LE Division in Okinawa, Japan for the last two years. When he entered Volkswagen of Naples for a quick visit with his dad, an employee at the dealership, he couldn’t believe his eyes. Surrounded by sign-holding dealership employees and long-time customers, was a 2016 GTI that his father held the keys to.
“I’m so proud of Paul’s service, and this was a great surprise to welcome him home with,” explained Ted Daly, Finance Director at Volkswagen of Naples. “As a veteran myself, it’s heartwarming to see my co-workers, and some of our customers come together and make this happen for him. You will never see a bigger smile on my face.”
Welcome home signs and a large Marine Corps flag welcomed Paul as he entered into the service facility, totally unaware of what was waiting for him. At the first glimpse of the new VW, the young Marine could not help but be overcome with emotion. There were smiles and hugs as the father and son shared in the moment.
“Once I found out about Ted’s plan, I knew our team would want to be involved,” said Brian Massoll, Managing Partner at Volkswagen of Naples. “We’re so proud of Paul and happy for Ted. These are the types of moments that pull our teams together, and show how much support our community has for veterans and active duty military personnel.”