To people from the Las Vegas valley, Fox 5 Surprise Squad is nothing new any more. This is a group that has, by example of its very actions, been able to prove that little acts of kindness can go a long way to make the world a better place for everyone.
Since its inception more than four years ago, the group and its members have performed more than 500 surprise philanthropic acts which have brought smiles (and tears—of joy!) to many hundreds of people living in the Las Vegas valley.
And it all grew out of a simple idea, come from a simple, down-to-earth man himself, namely Don Forman, owner of United Nissan store in Vegas as well as of a Nissan dealership at Tustin, Southern California and of the Lakada Wine Cellar in Vegas. Don’s idea was simple—reaching out to people in need as much as you can and as often as you can. Don’s fervent belief that doing the little you can for the people around you and for the people who are in need can make a huge impact in the lives of many in the long run helped to sow the first seeds of what is now famously known as Fox 5 Surprise Squad.
Ideas or sentiments of this kind, after all, are not too rare among people. But what was really worthy about Don’s idea was that he turned it into a conviction and then stood firmly by his conviction. He was able to instill the same belief in other people around him and that is how the Surprise Squad became a reality. Along its path, the group has found partners such as the American First Credit Union and the Albertsons Vons and this has only helped them to grow from strength to strength.
The many generous and heart-warming deeds, which have already changed the lives of many for better, are too numerous to mention here. For a brief recap, you may check this Fox 5 video at their YouTube channel, posted about a year ago. (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0H_QiKI8Xe0&index=26&list=PLeZRJn2kvu5pXLHdH3GKDIwg858nsNYmv).
To cite but one latest example, the Squad surprised Stephanie Rivera—a young struggling mom of five children and a smalltime makeup artist—at her home lavishing her with gifts to help Stephanie out with her children’s education and to further her own career as a makeup artist. As expected, Stephanie was overwhelmed and was lost for words at first. Once she was able to restrain her emotions, her words echoed the very idea that started Don Forman and his Surprise Squad in their praiseworthy mission—that this little help and understanding will change the life of her family big way in the years to come.
Even more noteworthy was the way Mr. Forman acted in the wake of the tragic mass shooting incident that took place at the Route 91 Harvest festival in October last year. Directly after the news of the shooting spread around the valley, Mr. Forman put his fleet of vehicles and almost all his staff members at the store to the service of the victims and their families.
“We haven’t even talked about selling a car, selling a service, selling a part,” Mr. Forman was quoted as saying to Automotive News in the aftermath of the incident. Instead, said he, all his team talked about was how they can be of any help and what they “can do as a team to help with the cure.”
For the next day and a half, more than 90 percent of Mr. Forman’s 220-strong staff at his Nissan store, encouraged actively by Mr. Forman himself, worked tirelessly to mitigate the devastating effects of the incident. This example alone should speak volumes for the empathy and the sincerity of the man that is Don Forman.