NEWINGTON--Veteran's Day in Newington put two military members in the driver's seat, and that was all part of the program. At Progressive's claim center garage the company kicked off the second year of the "Keys to Progress" program, which awards refurbished cars to servicemen and women who need them.
"It is to give back to those who serve us, our local heroes, " said Chris Murtaugh, the claims supervisor for the insurance company's service center in Newington.
Master Sgt. Christina Harvey, an active Connecticut Air National Guardsmen from Plainville who has a family of five, was given the keys to a recycled and sparkling 2013 emerald green Hyundai Sante Fe. "This is amazing," Harvey said. "It's overwhelming right now." Harvey applied for the program ealier this year and was selected from a group of military members.
Dave Seelye, a retired Marine sergeant from Winsted, smiled brightly when he was given the keys to a 2012 Ford Escape SUV. "It makes me feel great," Seelye said. "To be honored this way is humbling."
Across the country, Progressive and partners like the VFW and local car dealerships collaborate on the Keys to Progress Program. This year, Progressive reports they will award 117 cars to vets in 57 different cities. "It's all about the veterans today," Murtaugh added.