Every year, The Auto and Tire Doctor of Truckee gives away a car to a deserving local resident. This year, Truckee preschool teacher Patty Wood lucked out. In October, Patty was with her son Kevin when the car they were driving was rear ended. The vehicle was totaled. Though Patty was grateful that her friends and family helped out with rides, when the snow started falling and the temperatures were dropping, it became a safety issue not to have driving as an option.

On Dec. 20, Patty was surprised at Discovery Preschool by her friends, family, and Santa, as they presented her with a pristine, refurbished 2006 Subaru Forester. Nominated for the giveaway by her good friend Mercie Galvin, and seconded by many other local townspeople, Patty’s name rose to the top of the list of deserving candidates, finally to be hand-chosen by Auto Doctor’s owner, John Lamoreux.

“This is my way of saying thank you and giving back to this incredible place we get to call home,” Lamoreux told Moonshine Ink.


The Auto Doctor has been giving away cars for about 10 years now, using social media to publicize the event and seek deserving nominees to receive each year’s car for the past five. This year, there were over 200 entries. After a painstaking, tear-inducing process of narrowing the entries to 10, Lamoreux and his team planned to pick a name from the finalists — but there were too many compelling ones.

Ultimately, they decided to give away two cars this year, with Patty’s and fellow recipient Jim Matheis’ new rides joining the fleet of kindly gifted cars from Auto Doctor.

“Each year it gets a little bigger, and the stories get more heartfelt, making it very difficult to narrow it down to just one,” said Jodi DeRuise, who organizes the car giveaways. “I think we get as much joy surprising the winner as they get receiving the vehicle!”


  • Wade Snider

    Wade Snider is a traveler who's seen many worlds. He digs the backcountry and thrives in the worlds of surfing, travel, mountain biking, to name a few, and has many photography his medium. And given all that, quite possibly this photographer's favorite universe is the one where he's at home, snuggling with his cat.

    Connect with Wade

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    Email: wade (at) moonshineink.com

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