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  • (Desert Hot Springs, Calif.) - Team Mom Charities launched its inaugural event on Inauguration Day to help a local disabled and recently made homeless veteran get back on his feet.  Margaret Webb, aka, Team Mom Charities, presented Air Force veteran Daniel Peck with a check for $1,000 to help him and his family dig out of tough times they suffered recently. 

    Peck, a longtime DHS resident, served as an Airman First Class E3 at Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. He, his wife, Colleen, and their 18-year-old autistic son lost their housing in late 2020 after both his parents died.  Another family member was willed the house and sold it quickly to pay back a reverse mortgage.  This left the Pecks homeless except for their motor home. To compound that tragedy, Peck’s son contracted Covid-19 and had to sleep in a car isolated for two weeks from his parents who slept in the motor home. Team Mom heard about the family’s plight and stepped up to help them out. 

    “My son is in the Army. Jahi Martindale will be a veteran one day. I hope and pray that someone will help my son, if needed,” said Webb.  “I was blessed to see the need for a veteran and his family. I’m just a servant serving my community. Love thy neighbor. Together we can accomplish all things.” 

    Desert Hot Springs Mayor Scott Matas and Banning Mayor Colleen Wallace spoke at the event held at Royal Emerald Pharmaceuticals along with Rebecca Luna from the Greater Coachella Valley Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Julia Moody of the Southern California Black Chamber of Commerce, as well as UPS Store Owner Kent Helser.  Each praised Team Mom for her robust community involvement and strong connection to God. 

    But the star at the podium was 16-year-old Elizabeth Rigmaiden, a Desert Hot Springs High School student who received help from Team Mom when her family found themselves in need.  “Team Mom adopted our family, gave us food, gave us Christmas presents, and helped us when we needed it. I am tired of people saying bad things about Desert Hot Springs.  I’m here because I want people to know that Desert Hot Springs is not a bad town. We have a lot of good people here,” Rigmaiden said. 

    DHS Mayor Matas spoke after Rigmaiden and said he was happy to hear a teenager say such profound words from the heart.  “I, too, am from Desert Hot Springs. I was born here, raised here, went to high school across the freeway, and heard how bad DHS was all the time.  I’m so happy to hear a young voice speak about the good in our city.” 

    “Thank you for all your support and donations,” said a teary-eyed Colleen Gutierrez-Peck after her husband received the check from Team Mom. “We will now have a good start on the next part of our journey.”  The Pecks are driving their RV to Raton, New Mexico, a town of 5,000 people where one can buy a house for $65K on a third of an acre. Peck, a disabled veteran, lost his left arm in a motorcycle accident in 1979 after receiving an honorable discharge from the Air Force but still suffering from PTSD.  “I did not get any rehabilitation back then."  He said he's working on it now. 

    "I've always helped people my whole life. I was losing faith after losing our housing. I didn't think anyone would help us.  I'm so grateful to Team Mom," he said.

    Royal Emerald Pharmaceuticals Founder and CEO Mark Crozier donated $7,500 to Team Mom Charities since November 2020 to help her continue her homeless advocacy efforts in the Coachella Valley through Thanksgiving and Christmas.  This recent gesture is just another one of the ways she spreads her philanthropy.

    By Jackie Devereaux, Director of Communications and Media Relations for Royal Emerald Pharmaceuticals