Six years ago, Marine Gary Mokuau became a quadriplegic after an accident in Hawaii.
"I had to re-learn everything," Mokuau says. "It was like being a baby. That was the first struggle anyway. The car portion of it was a few months down the road before I got a thought about it."
After much searching and conversations with those in the know, Gary pursued the Veteran Affair's Driver Rehabilitation Program. It's a one-time, $11,000 auto grant by the V.A. toward the purchase of a vehicle...then that vehicle will be modified by the V.A. to help the disabled veteran drive.
Physical Therapist Edward Brodd helps assess the vet's needs by observing what the vet can and can't do.
"We are so geared to our own personal travel," Brodd says. "And just opening up the world to someone in a wheelchair, who could use a van like this or his own personal van and getting around and getting on with their lives, going back to school, getting another job."
Brodd says driving takes more physical energy than you might expect. And each veteran's ability will determine what needs to be done to the vehicle. On average the modifications will cost about $50,000 that is also picked up by the V.A.
Gary says the van has helped him to continue to provide for his family and well as continue his education. While there are roads he cannot go down because of physical limitations...the driver rehabilitation program has helped him see only green lights in his future.