Marshfield man is making a difference
By Kris Leonhardt
MARSHFIELD – In 2009, Dan Neve began a search for his dream car. As he hunted for the vehicle that would satisfy his longstanding wish, little did he know that the car would lead him to 26 states, traveling 100,000 miles, on a cause for hope.
“My mom had informed us Thanksgiving Day in 2009 that she had breast cancer. Then, in December, Linda (Dan’s wife) had her physical; they called her back in…and that’s when they said (the tests) were positive (for breast cancer,)” Neve said.
“I had been shopping for the car, when the news came that Linda was diagnosed, so before I ever took delivery of the car, I decided that I was going to use the car to raise awareness. But, I thought that I would do it for one year. Honestly, I thought it was going to be one year. That was 2010 and a lot has changed since then.”
After purchasing a 2010 Shelby GT500, Neve began with a goal of raising $10,000.
Neve began working with the Ford Company attending events, raising money and awareness along the way.
“My goal that first year was to raise $10,000 and somehow, we hit our goal,” he said. “But, after meeting so many influential individuals in the automotive industry, I could not walk away. As I tell others, ‘the snowball started down the hill.’
“Every year, I attend multiple national Ford car shows and other events, along with hosting a three-day event the first weekend of October (to) kick off breast cancer awareness month.”
He traveled throughout the country in his “Cruise for a Cause” vehicle, the car emblazoned with a pink word of Hope to spread awareness and raise funds for research, first for Susan G. Komen and then for the Marshfield Clinic; however, the scope of the cause would change.
“It was a few years back when I was at a show in Sturgis, South Dakota that a man asked me ‘Why, with so many men impacted by prostate cancer no one was supporting that?’” Neve explained. “It was then that the color scheme on our car changed; the ribbon flowing down the car went from just pink to pink and blue and (now) we support research for both.
“Then, while attending the SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) convention, again with my car on display as part of Ford Mustangs 50th anniversary, I was informed that Ford realized how many miles I was putting on my Shelby and decided to give me a new Mustang.”
Neve has logged 70,000 miles on his Shelby and 30,000 miles on the new vehicle he received in 2015 from Ford.
Each year, the money raised by Neve has continued to grow and this December, he presented a check to Marshfield Clinic Health System for $60,600.
“This year has been another great year and, in the past eight years, we have been able to donate over $250,000, so that one day we can look back and say, ‘Remember when there was cancer?’” he said.
For more information, visit www.cruise4acause.org.