VIRGINIA

Koons Toyota donates van to victim of violence

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Three years ago, Ryan Diviney was involved in a late night brawl outside a Morgantown, Va. convenience store. The violent encounter left him almost brain dead, stealing his future and robbing his family as well.

His mother, Sue Diviney, leaned into her son's face, eyes hopeful.

“Hi! Try to talk!,” she said.

But no matter how hard she tries, conversations with Ryan are one-sided.

"I know he's listening to me, but it's hard. I just want him to get up," Sue added.

During the holidays, the Diviney family used to drive to see the Christmas lights in Sterling, Va.

Now, Ryan barely leaves the house. In the driveway sits a worn, white minivan. It's equipped with a lift that doesn't work and isn't big enough to transport Ryan and his wheelchair.

"It was a nice gesture though," Ryan's father, Ken, smiled as he closed the back door of the van.

Ryan has left the house a few times in the past three years, but only by ambulance transport.

So Kari Diviney, his sister and a student at West Virginia University, sent letters to local car dealerships.

Jim Koons Automotive Companies took notices, and on a cloudy day in Ashburn, Va., a glimmer of hope arrived in a silver minivan. 

For Krystal Koons, the moment means as much to her as it does to the Diviney family.

"It's just such a special event, and I'm really happy to be here. I've got goose bumps!," Koons said.

The first thing the family plans to do is drive to see their favorite Christmas lights.

Ken explained, "We’ll take him out to see the Christmas lights on Juniper Street in Sterling, and just drive through there to give him that visual input and the sounds that he remembers."

"Now we can take him places. To me that just means so much, because I think it''s so unfair he can't have those moment anymore," Sue added. 

Sue, Ken and Kari still see the old Ryan. They hope trips in the new van will help bring him back.

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