GRAND ISLAND, N.Y. (WIVB) — The founder of a local nonprofit who’s been giving to families in need her whole life was given a gift instead – on Thursday.

Miss Elizabeth Triggs was in shock when DA John Flynn and the owners of Certified AutoBrokers on Grand Island surprised her with a brand new car.

“We try to give everything back to everybody on Christmas Day but today they gave something to me that I really, really needed and I’ve been trying to find money to get the car, I’ve been saving up,” Miss Triggs said.

Miss Triggs started her nonprofit, None Like You Family Education Community Outreach back in 1992 and has been helping people in the impoverished areas of Buffalo ever since.

This holiday season alone she gave out 6,000 free Thanksgiving meals, Christmas gifts to 257 children, and clothing and other donations to hundreds of people – all without her own car.

“I’m always depending on somebody giving me a car or I try to get a car,” she said.

Miss Triggs said this is the very first brand new car she’s ever owned.

The part she’s most excited about is getting to drive around and help even more people through her work in her very own car.

We got Easter coming up, we got Mother’s Day coming up, we got a volunteer day coming up in January where we gotta load it with food and clothing,” she said. “The nice thing about it is somebody thought enough of me to do this.”

The DA’s office helped out at some of her events and Flynn knew she needed a car. He found a dealer willing to help out.

She is the embodiment of love and for me to give something back to her or be part of it is just wonderful,” Flynn said.

“We’re just a small business so we can’t do things like this often and Miss Triggs was kind of the perfect fit because not only could we give Miss Triggs a vehicle, and certainly she needs one, but what she would do with that vehicle we felt was incredible powerful,” said Certified AutoBrokers owner, Chris Taylor.

Miss Triggs said this is the best Christmas she’s had in 72 years.

Kayla Green is a reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2021. See more of her work here.