Every once in a while, you come across stories that are so heartwarming you can’t help but share them. This is one of those stories.
We love cars — so much so that we’d consider ourselves major automobile enthusiasts. Perhaps you know a car enthusiast (or maybe you are one). Not super uncommon, right? There’s definitely a pretty well-populated subculture for car lovers. But have you ever met a car wash enthusiast?
Well, now you have. Meet Brian Campbell. He’s known as the “car wash industry’s #1 fan” — and car washes might just have saved his life.
Brian Campbell was born with Williams Syndrome, a genetic condition characterized by life-threatening respiratory issues, developmental delays, and learning disabilities. Brian’s heart condition was so serious that doctors predicted he wouldn’t live past 10 years old. (Spoiler alert: Brian is now in his mid-thirties.)
Sadly, doctors even recommended to Brian’s parents that they institutionalize him, adding that he would probably be severely mentally disabled and wouldn’t amount to much.
But Brian’s mom and dad loved him too much to give up on him. His mom, Valerie, began searching for something he would connect with that she could use to teach him. The unlikely subject: car washes.
Car Washes May Have Saved This Boy’s Life
Valerie discovered Brian’s fascination with car washes and brilliantly ran with it. Valerie and Brian visited every car wash around. They met the owners, who soon fell in love with the little guy. She put flash cards around the house and took stacks of carwashing magazines, cut out Brian’s favorite pictures, and made them into storybooks, which eventually taught Brian how to read… something doctors said he’d never do.
Brian now lives a full and inspiring life and his love for carwashing has never waned. He knows virtually all there is to know about carwashing and how the technology has evolved over the years. And he’s made his way into the hearts of many car wash owners during that time, too.
According to carwash.com:
Over the years the professional carwash industry has recognized Brian with various awards, including the Lifetime Membership Award, the Inspiration Award, the Brian Campbell Innovation Award and recently, the Brian Campbell People’s Choice Award, as well as numerous regional association awards.
With Mother’s Day right around the corner, we think this story is the perfect illustration of a mother’s unparalleled love. Brian’s mom loved him and believed in him so much, against the odds. Her mantra was “Don’t give up hope, and focus on the positives.” She would have moved heaven and earth to make sure Brian could talk, read, function, and live a full and productive life. She is, without a doubt, one of the primary reasons Brian is where he is today.
To all the moms out there: Happy Mother’s Day. We honor and thank you for your love and sacrifice!