GOD BLESS THE USA
By: Cathy Droz – HER Certified
Song Artist – Lee Greenwood
This may not sound or look like a typical auto review. You might think the song I chose, “God Bless the USA” is a poor fit for a review of a Japanese brand vehicle. I look at it differently; yes, I test drive all makes and models of vehicles, many American brands. What I am trying to convey is that in America we have such freedom of expression, freedom of the press, and the freedom to control our own destiny, to write about our journeys, and to travel freely … that is until 2020.
The inspiration for this review was the photograph of my goddaughter, Tracy. She is an ER nurse at a New York City hospital, working unbelievably stressful shifts. She came down with 101 fever, sore throat, tested for COVID-19 and was sent home. Three days later she received a negative result, only to return to her ER duties 48 hours later. Married less than a year, her husband is a New Jersey police officer; equaling two first responders in one family, on the front line.
This made me think of how fortunate I was, test driving $60,000 cars in sunny Arizona. I chose to do this kind of review based on a rush of family memories, patriotism, and being in quarantine. My son-in-law, an Army National Guardsman, is off driving trucks to destinations wherever help is needed. We are so grateful to first responders everywhere, including health care workers and those hard-working checkers at the grocery store. We are supporting local businesses as much as possible, wearing masks and hanging our flag proudly every day at our home.
This video contains my photos taken over the years, from the fire engine company in my neighborhood to the police officer sharing crime stopper hints with my grandson. Also included; a parade for veterans, my Veteran friend on his tractor helping neighbors, the cemetery and gravestone for my father-in-law who served in WWII, my three grandsons waiting for the first little league game of the season to begin, Lady Liberty (a photo I took on my trip to Ellis Island), the Brooklyn Bridge, closing with my granddaughter waving her flag at a Memorial Day parade.
The photo I did not take personally was the iconic ground zero flag raising, symbolic of the 9/11 terrorist attack. 9/11 was also an unforeseen tragedy. Coincidentally my goddaughter Tracy’s father, a Port Authority Lieutenant, lost ten of his men that day.
During these times, where all our circumstances vary in degrees, I think of what this country stands for, and how strong we are as a neighborhood, city and nation because the people of the USA are fearless and hopeful. So whether I test drive a Ford or a Lexus, the common thread is we are in this together.
- Lexington KY is where many of the Lexus models sold
- in the U.S.A. are manufactured
- Plano, Texas is the US Corporate office of Toyota and Lexus
- 9/11 Flag went missing only to be returned 13 years later. It now rests in the NYC 9/11 memorial museum
Toyota and Lexus doing their part:
PLANO, Texas, March 27, 2020 – As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, Toyota Motor North America, Inc. (TMNA)( Including Lexus) continues to assist those in need with essential supplies, emergency relief and is providing on-going support to many local organizations and non-profits. These efforts include monetary, “in-kind” donations, plus utilizing several of the company’s North American facilities to fabricate face shields while collaborating with medical device companies to speed the manufacture of ventilators, respirators, and other vital devices for hospitals.
2020 Lexus GS350 Premium – F Sport Information
- Lexus Safety System: Pre-Collision System w/Ped Detection, All-Speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control; intelligent High Beam Headlamps, Lane Departure Alert with steering assist and lane keep assist.
- 10 Airbags / Smart Stop Technology – Backup Camera – Power Folding Exterior Mirrors
- Lexus Navigation System with 12.3 ‘display
- Smart Watch & Alexa Skill Integration
- 19’ Split 5 Spoke Alloy Wheels
- 16-way F Sport Driver’s Seat
- F Sport Leather Steering Wheel
- Sport S plus Drive Mode
- Variable Suspension AVS Variable Gear-Ratio Steering
- 14’ 2-piece front brake rotors W/4 piston calipers
- F Sport unique front fascia and grille
- Rear valence and rear spoiler
- F Sport badging
As Tested: $61,470
19 MPG City 27 MPG Highway
Color: Matador Red Mica
First Responders – Priceless