By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, June 8, 2007 – After having breakfast with some of her fans in Nashville, Tenn., yesterday, country music singer LeAnn Rimes, as one of her songs says, had absolutely “Nothin’ Better to Do” than present a handicap-accessible van to a severely injured veteran.
Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Peter Reid and his wife, Michele, attended Rimes’ fan club breakfast, part of the Country Music Association’s annual Music Festival. Little did they suspect the award-winning singer had more than an autographed photo for them.
“We were sitting by the table, and LeAnn Rimes walked up and introduced herself, like we didn’t know who she was,” Peter said. “She said she had a surprise for us outside.”
Waiting for them outside was a Chevrolet Uplander equipped with an automatic door and ramp, and other systems necessary to accommodate Peter’s wheelchair. Rimes presented them with the keys, then signed the back window of the vehicle.
The nautical blue vehicle has “all the goodies,” Peter said. A Chevrolet representative told the crowd and media gathered for the event that the vehicle had everything Peter needed to ride in comfort.
Peter, a Seabee with Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 14, was severely injured in May 2004 while serving in Anbar, Iraq. He suffered a severe brain injury, paralysis to the left side of his body and several blood clots caused by shrapnel lodged in his brain from the mortar attack, which killed five fellow Seabees and wounded 34 others. More.
Thank you LeAnn. You are a model for the rest of the celebrities in this country. And thank you Chevrolet.
Thank you for your service and sacrifice Petty Officer 1st Class Peter Reid.