‘Amazing’ family earns top votes

A Chilliwack family struggling to save money for a vehicle, won’t have to struggle any longer.

The Casper family with the refurbished van awarded to them by Fix Auto in Chilliwack.

The Casper family with the refurbished van awarded to them by Fix Auto in Chilliwack.

A Chilliwack family struggling to save money for a vehicle, won’t have to struggle any longer.

Elizabeth (Lizzy) Casper wiped tears from her eyes as she walked into the lobby of  Fix Auto on Young Road Thursday, realizing she and her growing family had won a refurbished GMC van.

Fix Auto had partnered with the Chilliwack Society for Community Living to give away the van to a deserving family. The vehicle received  a mechanical overhaul by Pro Auto Care, new tires and wheels from Big O Tires, and servicing from Mr. Lube.  Fix Auto brought the van back to pristine condition, complete with a sparkling new paint job.

More than a month ago,  Fix Auto launched a Facebook appeal, asking for nominations. The Casper family earned multiple mentions in the 200-word submissions.

“I can’t think of a more deserving family,” said one.  “Amazing,” said another.

Lizzy and husband Richard have two small children, and a third expected in January.

The couple had hoped to secure a vehicle by the time the new baby arrived. However, when an injury sidelined Richard from his job at Home Depot, money they had saved was used to help cover their living costs.

With Richard now back at work, the couple had just begun to build up their savings account again.

Life without a vehicle is a challenge, the two agree. Lizzy is completing her bachelor of social work at the new UFV Chilliwack campus, meaning a cross-town bus trip. Richard’s evening shifts at Home Depot, meanwhile, mean a long walk after the buses have stopped running.

And then there are the day-to-day challenges of buying groceries and just getting around with two small children.

With those problems now behind them, the couple can look to the future, including Richard’s dream of enrolling in BCIT.

Their new van has plenty of room for groceries, strollers and baby seats.

And it’s also got lots of room for kids – which is good, says Lizzy with a giggle, still a little in disbelief, “Especially because we plan on having lots.”