Press Release | Jan 03, 2019

2019 Rugged Ridge Baja - First Build Day

By Austin Hatcher Foundation
By The Austin Hatcher Foundation
2019 Rugged Ridge Baja - First Build Day

The Austin Hatcher Foundation for Pediatric Cancer is heading into 2019 with another exciting Industrial Arts Therapy automotive build project. This innovative Industrial Arts Therapy program is a hands on, wrench turning program that uses tools to inspire passion for learning and creativity, help patients recover physically, mentally and socially after treatment, as well as provide an opportunity to build a brighter future. The program also creates team building skills, improves cognitive function, motor skills, and provides children with exposure to STEM and automotive areas of interest for the future. Foundation staff is also there to walk alongside the child with cancer, their siblings, and parents struggling on their difficult journey.

This car will be the third vehicle built by the Foundation, with pediatric cancer patients and their families providing the labor for the modifications. The build will be modified into a 2019 Rugged Ridge Baja. Rugged Ridge®/OMIX-ADA®, Inc., a Truck Hero company, has provided the necessary parts to complete the modifications required for the transformation.  Rugged Ridge®/Omix-ADA®, Inc. is the world’s largest independent manufacturer and wholesaler of Jeep®, truck, and off-road parts, accessories, and floor liners.

The first build day was held December 15, 2018 at Truck ‘N Trailer USA. The main challenge for this build was ensuring all necessary components were disassembled from the vehicle, in order to allow for new Rugged Ridge® parts to be installed during later build dates. Disassembly was completed on the following: front and rear bumpers, front and rear fenders and inner fenders, emblems, and tail lights. Milwaukee generously provided the power tools necessary to complete the work.

Additional 2019 build days will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Truck 'N Trailer USA on January 19, February 16, and March 16. The 2019 Rugged Ridge Baja will be revealed to the public at the 2019 Jeep Beach event in April at Daytona International Speedway with Rugged Ridge®/Omix-ADA®, Inc.