ALBUQUERQUE, NM (KRQE) – A newly opened car wash on the west side of Albuquerque offers veterans a free car wash on Veterans Day. Freedom Wash opened just a week ago, but its owner already has big plans for helping local men and women who have served in the military.
Joe Maez is a real estate agent and a veteran himself. He said he noticed the rundown car wash that used to be in the same spot and saw the potential to clean it. “It feels good to be giving this property back to the community as it is. I got a little emotional and made quite a sizeable investment, but it’s worth it because good things require sacrifice, just like freedom requires sacrifice, ”Maez said.
Photos before and after the renovations for Freedom Wash. Photo courtesy Joe Maez.
Maez said the inspiration for Freedom Wash continues to be to honor those who fought for the country’s freedom. Although the business has only just opened, he already has an eye on creating a foundation for veterans who are terminally ill or injured. “This is about doing something different. Similar to TOMS shoes or Make a Wish, we want people to be proud that they spent money here because it goes back to our veterans, ”said Maez. “I’m doing something for these veterans to give them some kind of memory that they and their families can remember forever.”
Even if people don’t get through the car wash, Maez hopes the business will serve as a reminder for the community. “Whether or not they use the car wash, when they look at the sign and see ‘freedom,’ it’s a reminder of what it took to get freedom,” Maez said. “Personally, I know the sacrifices it takes to gain freedom. We just want to say ‘thank you’ and really remind the community of what veterans have done for us and how we should be grateful.”
Freedom Wash is located at 2200 Ladera NW in Albuquerque. It is open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. You can find more information on their Facebook page.