HAWTHORNE (CBS) — A Marine from Hawthorne who served his country in Afghanistan was the one being served Christmas morning.

Edgar Morales was given a Volkswagen Phaeton by Cars 4 Causes and Project: Hollywood Cares, a military-focused charity.

Representatives of the charities presented the car to Morales and his family this morning at his Hawthorne home. While the car didn’t fit under his Christmas tree, it was a welcome present nonetheless.

Morales, a Marine sergeant, returned home in November after completing a seven-month tour in Afghanistan.

With a three-hour-plus daily commute to Camp Pendleton each day, his wife Wilma in school finishing her degree, a new baby at home and only one vehicle between them, the Morales were in need of a second vehicle.

“I can’t believe this surprise on Christmas Day. I am shocked and so grateful for this car,” said Morales, a sergeant in the 1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion, Supply division at Camp Pendleton.

“Thank you very much to Cars 4 Causes and Project: Hollywood Cares.

This car is perfect and it will be a huge help to me and my family.”

Cars 4 Causes accepts donations of all motor vehicles. They evaluate each donation and, if cost effective, makes repairs to sell the vehicle while ensuring the highest tax deduction value and net proceeds to charity. One car a month is set aside for donation directly to families in need.

Project: Hollywood Cares distributes products of the entertainment industry, such as DVDs of popular movies, to deployed troops, wounded soldiers in military hospitals and the surviving spouse and children of fallen heroes in efforts to support America’s military personnel for their dedicated service and sacrifice.

To make a donation, visit the Cars 4 Causes at www.cars4causes.net. And to donate to Project Hollywood Cares, click on the following link: www.projecthollywoodcares.org.

 (©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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