Ford and Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson give a 2018 Mustang to an injured veteran
Ford unveiled its newly refreshed 2018 Ford Mustang by having Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson present the pony car to an American combat vet. The video is both as heartwarming and heartbreaking as it sounds. Johnson prefaced the video on his YouTube channel saying he knows Marlene Rodriquez a fan of his and Ford would like to do something special for Rodriguez in honor of her winning the Ford Go Further Award. Also, it just got really dusty in here.
“Way more important than just being my fan, she’s a combat veteran with three tours and has overcome a tremendous amount of challenges,” The Rock noted.
Rodriguez received the Purple Heart during her third tour of duty. She survived through two roadside explosions and a firefight, but had to leave the Army due to a traumatic brain injury. In 2013, she became the first woman to join the Chapter 49 of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, according to the San Diego Tribune. She talked about her experiences in the video during an interview with Ford. She was clearly proud to have served her country, but still carries scars from her experiences.
“To receive the Purple Heart, losing someone and earning a reward, it didn’t mesh well with me,” she said. “It’s an honor to have it, but to receive it? I have more guilt than anything else.”
Rodriguez went on to talk about the Military Warriors Support Foundation, a nonprofit that provides support of combat veterans and Gold Star families as they transition back into civilian life. They provide financial resources, counseling and gave away 700 mortgage free homes to military families through its Homes4WoundedHeroes program.
As Rodriguez was talking about the foundation, Johnson surprised her on set. Johnson set Rodriguez up with tickets to the world premier of his new film ‘Baywatch’ as well as another unexpected surprise, a 2018 Ford Mustang. The reveal was very emotional, as Rodriguez insisted she didn’t deserve the award.
“You deserve more,” Johnson said.
Johnson told his YouTube viewers he was moved by Rodriguez and her story.
“I will never forget this moment for the rest of my life. What an honor it was to stand before this woman.”