Looking for a New Ride: How About a ‘Tricked Out’ Scleroderma Foundation Golf ‘Car’ Autographed by NASCAR Cup and Busch Series Drivers

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Have you ever wondered how far you would go to help someone you love, only to feel helpless yourself? Then you think, if only I could get some support I could… Well Teresa Didio Baker has taken that very thought and turned it into “The Just Joan Project” by creating “The Great Awareness Vehicle” for her sister. Following its tour, look for it on eBay.

Have you ever wondered how far you would go to help someone you love, only to feel helpless yourself? Then you think, if only I could get some support I could…

Well Teresa Didio Baker has taken that very thought and turned it into “The Just Joan Project” by creating “The Great Awareness Vehicle” for her sister.

The motivation for “The Just Joan Project” was Teresa’s sister Joan Blanchard who was diagnosed with the worst form of scleroderma, a devastating autoimmune disease for which there is no cure. While Joan’s symptoms began in March of 2005, she was not properly diagnosed until February 2006. Initially, the only things Teresa could do for Joan directly were to offer emotional support and a helping hand when needed. Then after noticing that the Scleroderma Foundation had become a 2006 Associate Sponsor of the ppc Racing/AutoZone #22 Ford Fusion driven by NASCAR Busch Series driver Kenny Wallace, she thought of a unique way to raise awareness and money to combat scleroderma. She decided to “trick out” a golf cart.

“The Great Awareness Vehicle” has been in the hands of Chuck Hadley owner of Atlantic Golf Carts and Bob Lauterbach owner of Lauterbach’s Auto Body both in Chesapeake, VA. Working on a tight schedule, Chuck has created an unbelievable muscle car and Bob did a magnificent job painting the car an awesome Pearl White in preparation for its debut. The end result is exactly what Teresa envisioned -- perfect in every way. The final product has recently been unveiled so check out the specs:

Magnificent Pearl White Body with the following specifications –

Upgraded 12 Horsepower 50 ft. lbs. Torque Motor with Programmable 400amp Controller

Jakes Brand Lift Kit with ITP 12" Custom Aluminum Rims with All-Trail 23"x10"x12" Tires

36 Volts, Estimated Speed 18 – 20 mph

Interior –

Four Passenger (including driver) Front and Rear Bench Seats

Folding Convertible Rear Seat w/Custom Two-Tone Cushions

(rear-seat folds down to make a flatbed)

Chrome "Mustang Style" Steering Wheel

Lockable Dashboard in Matching Carbon Fiber Look w/Stainless Steel Steering Column Cover

Overhead Console w/Dual XMP6000 XM Radio Complete (XM Radio not activated)

(Includes AM/FM/CD/XM Ready Receiver, XMDIRECT Tuner, XM Antenna)

(Console in carbon fiber look. Antenna & All Necessary Wiring)

Exterior –

Head & Tail Light Kit. "Wig Wag" Headlight Flashers. Undercarriage Lights (to be added)

(Automotive style fuse block installed for accessory wiring)

Bi-Fold Windshield. Passenger Support Handles. Rearview Mirror (to be added)

Cigarette/Cell Phone Adapter. Stainless Steel Nerf Bars

Matching Stainless Steel Rear Bumper. Matching Stainless Steel Tubular Front Brush Guard

Chrome-Plate Rocker Panels, Safety Decals & Race Decals

During NASCAR Speed Week, “The Great Awareness Vehicle” is on display at ppc Racing’s showroom located at 177 Knob Hill Road, Mooresville, NC. During this stopover, the goal is to obtain as many NASCAR Nextel Cup and Busch Series drivers’ autographs as possible (with documentation to their authenticity).

So get ready to place your bid for charity. Following the Coca-Cola 600 at Lowe’s Motor Speedway on May 28th, and an appearance at the 6th Annual “Stepping Out to Cure Scleroderma” Boardwalk-a-thon in Belmar, NJ on June 4th, “The Great Awareness Vehicle” golf car will

be placed on eBay and auctioned off with the proceeds to benefit the Scleroderma Foundation’s research funding program.

Scleroderma is a chronic, often progressive autoimmune disease - like rheumatoid arthritis, lupus and multiple sclerosis - in which the body’s immune system attacks its own tissue. The disease, which literally means “hard skin” can cause thickening and tightening of skin, as well as serious damage to internal organs including the lungs, heart, kidneys, esophagus, and gastrointestinal tract. Scleroderma, which affects over 300,000 people in the United States alone, occurs three to four times more often in women than in men. Scleroderma even affects children as 5,000 to 7,000 children suffer with either the linear or morphea form of pediatric scleroderma. For some individuals, scleroderma is a nuisance, for others, it is a life-threatening disease. For most people with scleroderma, the disease has a serious impact on daily life. Although medications can sometimes help patients deal with the many symptoms of this disease, there is no known cause or cure at this time.

For more information about scleroderma, call toll free at 1-800-722-HOPE

We invite you to consider supporting “The Great Awareness Vehicle” initiative. Who knows, you could be the envy of the golf course with your very own fully-appointed golf ‘car’. While you may not be the best golfer on the course, you’ll be the coolest and definitely the fastest! Please help us find a cure.

This project is dedicated to Joan Didio Blanchard & to all Scleroderma patients and their families.

Contact: Len Johnsen, Scleroderma Foundation of the Delaware Valley

Office: (732) 449-7001

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