Noelani Dreger receiving her 2005 Nissan Altima.

Noelani Dreger receiving her 2005 Nissan Altima.

Abbotsford Nissan gives Christmas Car to local single mom

Refurbished 2005 Altima will help mother of two drive son to hospital

It’s been a rough year for Noelani Dreger. But she’s just had one stroke of luck this season she won this year’s Christmas Car at Abbotsford Nissan, a 2005 Nissan Altima.

Dreger is a single mom to two sons, nine-year-old Gaberial and 12-year-old William. Gaberial has been battling heart problems, and Dreger has to make frequent trips with him back and forth to Children’s Hospital in Vancouver. Without a vehicle, she’s been relying on a time-consuming patchwork of buses, taxis and the occasional ride from her dad. But when her mother had a heart attack this spring, caring for her meant Dreger’s father was rarely available to drive her and Gaberial.

“I didn’t want to put the burden on my dad. It’s been a stressful year, but we’ve always made do,” she said.

Dreger’s friend Krista nominated her for the Christmas Car giveaway a program that’s given a free car to a deserving Abbotsfordian for nine years running.

Krista called her to tell her she’d won, and Dreger was ecstatic.

“I felt shocked, amazed. I felt like I was in a dream” she said.

Dave Jung, the parts and service manager for Abbotsford Nissan, said he and the Christmas Car committee were moved by Dreger’s story.

“We really feel like this is going to impact her life in a positive way,” he said.

The giveaway is sponsored by Abbotsford Nissan, Fix Auto, Aldergrove Auto Wrecking, 20/20 Auto Glass, Hub Insurance, BCAA, Sherwin Williams Paint and AbbyNews. The automotive sponsors work together to ensure the refurbished car is in tip-top shape, with new paint, shocks, brakes, tires, glass and more. It comes with a $1,000 credit toward insurance and a year-long BCAA membership, and altogether Jung hopes it’ll give Dreger a year of completely hassle-free driving.

Dreger picked up the silver sedan at the dealership in the Fraser Valley Auto Mall on the morning of Dec. 23, posed for a quick photo with her sons, and immediately got started on errands. The crew visited Wal-Mart and went grocery shopping, all without having to wait in the rain for a bus.

The family has plans for a quiet Christmas this year, and will visit family in town on Boxing Day.

“I’m the type of person who doesn’t go out and ask for anything,” said Dreger. “We’re just thankful for what we do have, and who we have around us.”

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod, seen here on April 9, 2021 with four-year-old sister Elena and mom Vanessa, was born with limb differences. The family, including husband/dad Sean McLeod, is looking for a family puppy that also has a limb difference. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
Chilliwack family looking for puppy with limb difference, just like 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy McLeod born as bilateral amputee, now her family wants to find ‘companion’ puppy for her

Four members with Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans were out at Cultus Lake on March 28 and 29 hauling trash out of the waters. (Henry Wang)
PHOTOS: Out-of-town divers remove 100s of pounds of trash from Cultus Lake

Members of Divers for Cleaner Lakes and Oceans hauled out 470 pounds of trash over two days

Photo courtesy of Abbotsford Police Department.
‘Vehicle Maintenance 101 for Teens’ to be hosted by Abbotsford Police traffic officers

Virtual meetups with Q&A period held on April 23, May 11, May 25

Stock photo from Unsplash.com
Free online workshops on ‘advance care planning’ hosted in Abbotsford

3 sessions hosted by Abbotsford Hospice Society and Association for Healthy Aging

People stroll through rows of tulips in bloom during the Tulips of the Valley Festival on May 2, 2017. The colourful spring event, now called Chilliwack Tulips, opens on Sunday, April 11, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack tulip attraction open this weekend after being closed last year due to COVID-19

More than 6.5 million bulbs in all at this year’s colourful Chilliwack Tulips event

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

Emergency crews on scene after a small plane crashed in a grassy area on the northeast side of Boundary Bay Airport Saturday morning (April 10). A freelancer said the plane caught fire and one person was transported to hospital by BC Emergency Health Services. (Photo: Shane MacKichan)
1 taken to hospital after plane crash at Metro Vancouver airport

Plane appears to have suffered ‘significant’ damage, says freelancer

A vehicle that was driven through the wall of a parkade at Uptown Shopping Centre and into the nearby Walmart on April 9 was removed through another hole in the wall later that night. (Photo via Saanich Police Department and Ayush Kakkar)
Vehicle launched into B.C. Walmart removed following rescue of trapped workers

Crews cut new hole in parkade wall to remove vehicle safely

As of Saturday, April 10, people born in 1961 are the latest to be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. (Black Press files)
B.C. residents age 60+ can now register to get their COVID-19 vaccine

Vaccine registration is now open to people born in 1961 or earlier

A new saline gargle test, made in B.C., will soon be replacing COVID-19 nasal swab tests for kids. (PHSA screenshot)
Take-home COVID-19 tests available for some B.C. students who fall ill at school

BC Children’s Hospital plans to provide 1,200 kits to Vancouver district schools this April

Ruming Jiang and his dog Chiu Chiu are doing fine following a brush with hypothermia that saw several people work together to get them out of the Fraser River near Langley’s Derby Reach Park on March 25, 2021 (Special to the Advance Times)
Man finds men who rescued him from drowning in B.C.’s Fraser River

A grateful Ruming Jiang says he will thank them again, this time in person when the pandemic ends

The 10-part Netflix series Maid, which is being exclusively shot in Greater Victoria, was filming near Prospect Lake in Saanich last month. (Photo courtesy Fred Haynes)
Province announces $150,000 towards film studio, fulfilling B.C. NDP promise

Investment to fund movie studio feasibility study at Camosun College

Tyson Ginter, 7, is proud of his latest Hot Wheels he recently received by Quesnel RCMP Const. Matt Joyce. (Photo submitted)
B.C. Mountie handing out toy cars to light up children’s faces

‘A lot of times it will be the only interaction they have with the police,’ says Const. Matt Joyce

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read