East Texas woman wins 2021 Jeep during United Way giveaway and wants to pay it forward

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TYLER, Texas (KETK)- One East Texan now has a new Jeep for free. They received the nice gift after the annual United Way giveaway in Tyler.

United Way tried to give back to one of their supporters. They say 2020 was a difficult time for everyone. But, they still saw many East Texans step up to the plate.

Among those was Rachel Means, who was the winner of a brand new 2021 Jeep Renegade from Patterson Motors.

Means has only been in Tyler for four years, but she says she’s seen United Way do great work. She is planning on doing a pay it forward campaign with her winnings. Means wants to hold her own giveaway through the company to donate the car to a high school senior.

United Way also said despite the pandemic, they had more donors in 2021.

“So many people have come up to me and said you know I need United Way three or four years ago when I was going through something, and the programs helped me. Now, I can help others through my gift,” said John Barry, Development Director for United Way of Smith County.

There were more than 2,200 tickets purchased this year. Anyone who pledged $5.00 a week for the year or a total of $260 for the year, received one entry.

Barry says these donations will help more than 60,000 people.

The United Way of Smith County first started in 1940 as the Tyler Community Chest.

They help East Texans by giving money to local programs and non-profits.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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