Wake Up to Something Good

Single Mother Surprised With SUV From Dallas-Based Nonprofit

An anonymous donor helped get the Dallas woman much-needed transportation

NBCUniversal, Inc.

Christmas came early for a Dallas woman, and the gift with a big red bow on it is the Something Good she's needed for a while now.

Rita Perez got the keys to her own SUV on Tuesday.

She's a single mom whose had numerous setbacks. She lost her home back in 2019 when her stove exploded and caught the house on fire. Then her sister's garage in Garland, where they lived, had pipes burst in the February freeze, and her husband left the family while she was pregnant with their ninth child.

The family has been living in her other sister's home in Lewisville, all 10 of them in one bedroom. The kids are now ages one through 14.

Perez turned to the Dallas-based Operation Care International for help but never expected what was waiting for her when she got to the nonprofit's offices this week.

Susie Jennings surprised Perez with a gently used Nissan Pathfinder. An anonymous donor paid nearly $30,000 to buy it.

Perez and her kids were all smiles as Jennings handed her the keys to the SUV. Having transportation will be a big step in helping her rebuild her life.

"Rita has worked three jobs including being a dental assistant, warehouse worker and house cleaning, which is what she does currently," OCI said in a news release. "This SUV is much needed so she can drive to work and pick up her children."

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