Local businesses come together to fix Vietnam veteran's truck for free

Vietnam veteran surprised by generosity

CARLSBAD, Calif. - Three local businesses stepped up in a big way this week to help a local Vietnam veteran.

80-year-old James Langford's Ford F-150 was returned to him Friday completely repaired.

The Carlsbad resident had turned it in to Caliber Collision to have a scratch fixed. It was sideswiped in a hit-and-run crash one night. However, the employees at Caliber noticed a Purple Heart sticker in Langford's window. They decided to fix the scratch for free. They also threw in a new bumper and fixed all the dents for free.

"We did it because he's given so much for us and our country," said Caliber Collision manager James Chakiris.

Caliber contacted Drew Ford in La Mesa for parts. Then, Caliber and Dent Works did all the labor free of charge.

"I was struck speechless because I just could not imagine any business firm going out of their way to do so much," said Langford, a retired sergeant.

Langford spent three tours of duty in Vietnam. He lost his right leg as a result of being exposed to Agent Orange. The truck is one of the only ways he can get around.

Chakiris said they did not expect any publicity from their good deed. In fact, it was Langford's son who contacted 10News to share the fact that three local businesses took care of his dad.

"I'm not used to that sort of treatment," said Langford.

The repairs cost almost $2,000.

"I mean, it happened over the Thanksgiving holiday, which makes it real nice," said Langford.

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