The Club was enjoying our new meeting place at IHOP this month when, surprisingly, a man came riding in on a three-wheeled cart. Mike Beal, local realtor, had been invited by Club President Ernie Wentrcek to talk about a project he was involved in, called the P.E.T.
Mike and other members of his church had learned about the Personal Energy Transportation (P.E.T) project and had volunteered to make some of the wooden bodies for the vehicles. However, when they delivered them to the group in Luling that had been producing them, they learned that the members of that group were too old and sick to continue. As a result, they wound up bringing all of the equipment back to Bryan and setting up shop locally. (Sort of a “no good deed goes unpunished” thing.) As Mike said during his talk and demonstration, “once you see how such a small simple product can make such a significant difference to an individual, you cannot walk away without helping.”
The P.E.T. is a hand-propelled wheelchair, with much greater stability and durability than an ordinary one. They can maneuver on dirt, rocky ground, even up and down steps. The units are produced locally and shipped (along with packing materials of clothing, shoes, school supplies, etc.) to Third World Countries designated by P.E.T.’s one employee. The cost of each unit is approximately $250 but its value to someone with damaged or missing limbs is immeasurable.
After hearing the program and looking at the pictures of happy recipients, the Club made the decision to sponsor a P.E.T. from the Texas Touring T’s. (We are very much into simple but lifechanging forms of transportation.) We did ask one thing in return – that the vehicle be painted black!
The following is the letter sent with our check to the First United Methodist Church, the official sponsor of P.E.T. Project Texas.
January 19, 2010
First United Methodist Church
Re: P.E.T. Project
To Whom It May Concern:
Mike Beal spoke to our Model T Club, the Texas Touring T’s, this past week and talked about the P.E.T. project that your church is supporting. Our club voted to purchase one of the P.E.T. vehicles and enclosed is a check for $250 to pay for one. We will leave it to your organization to decide where it can best be used but we would like to ask for one thing. In recognition of the famous (but incorrect) quote of Henry Ford, we’d like to ask that it be painted black.
If we can, we will obtain a plaque to go on the P.E.T. identifying it is a gift from our club. We will give the plaque to Mike Beal when it is ready.
This seems to be a very worthwhile project and we are very pleased to be a part of it.
Nancy Hardeman, Treasurer
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