MORIARTY (KRQE) – You’ve probably heard of “Pimp My Ride,” an MTV show where mechanics take cars that have seen better days and fix them up, but what about “Pimp My Walker?”
That is what one woman asked a local business to do.
Customized cars, that’s what the East Mountains chapter of Dignity Car Club is all about, until recently.
“It was a little different,” said Abran Apodaca. “We’re used to putting together cars, hydraulics and painting and stuff, so this was a little bit out of my realm.”
“We get more satisfaction out of doing something like this than customizing our own cars, and that’s something we’re passionate about,” said Andrew Richards.
Now, they are customizing walkers, or at least one walker.
They teamed up with other local businesses, donating their services for custom embroidery, upholstery and painting to surprise, essentially, a stranger they just ran into one day.
Turns out Karen Romero is usually the one donating her time, volunteering for the New Mexico Air National Guard and giving to charities.
However, Friday was about giving to her.
Romero said she had a stroke four years ago and doctors said she would never walk again.
She did, but last year, she had to start using a walker when doctors discovered she had a type of blood vessel malformation that can cause dizziness or fainting.
Romero closed her eyes Friday for the big reveal.
Car club members presented her with her new ride while dozens cheered her on.
The new walker is purple with a diamond-tucked seat and an attached bag embroidered with humming birds.
Romero said it’s fitting that the car club is named, dignity.
“They really built up and helped me restore my dignity,” Romero said. “That’s kind of what got lost in the big picture is I wasn’t able to hold my head high when I was walking down in my old broken walker.”