The Cherokee Nation is the largest federally recognized tribe in the United States with more than 4,000 veterans living on the reservation. The closest Office of Veterans Affairs office is just over 25 miles away and it is common to have seven people at a time being transported to appointments. In the past, another vehicle would need to be found to fill these needs. The Cherokee Nation Office of Veterans Affairs reached out to Wounded Warriors Family Support to see what could be done to remedy the situation.
A 2018 Ford 4x4 Expedition met the requirements for transporting Veterans to their appointments and for general use for Veteran related activities through the Cherokee Nation Veteran program. These activities include but are not limited to the following: transporting hot meals for the Veterans from our partnership with the food bank in Tulsa, picking up supplies for Veteran events, and transporting Veterans to trainings and seminars.
The Ford Expedition was provided through our NAVSTaR program which directly supports vehicles to Native American Tribes throughout the United States. American Indians serve in the U.S. Military in greater numbers than any other ethnic group. According to the U.S. Department of Defense, as of 2012 there were over 22,000 American Indians and Alaska Natives on active duty, and the 2010 Census identified over 150,000 American Indian and Alaska Native veterans. 27 Native Americans have been awarded the Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest military honor.