Bevan Bailey knows military life and injuries all too well.
Now, he’s trying to help out his colleagues with a business he wants to run once he transitions to civilian life.
He started Dirty Detail Mobile Auto Detailing a while ago as a side gig from his main job at the base in Comox, and he’s been offering free vehicle detailing for military veterans, along with first responders like police, fire and emergency personnel who have been injured or have mobility issues.
“I’m an Afghanistan combat vet,” he says.
He’s in his late 30s now and due for a release in early 2024 with a full medical pension after serving in Afghanistan in 2008 and 2009. He also suffered a serious motorcycle accident that has left him with a long gash on his right leg. After the crash, he was laid up and unable to drive for well over a year, and he had to learn to ask for help, something he concedes was not always easy.
“I’ve had multiple operations,” he says. “I know how hard it is to have everything taken from you.”
When dealing with injuries, he knows simple moves that many people take for granted do not come easily for veterans and others with mobility issues. He also knows some of the injuries they suffer are not visible.
Already, he’s busy, full up one week and taking bookings into the next. Word is getting around, and he is hopeful this will lead to more business that will help him once he has left the military.
“I just got a business licence,” he says. “I want to build some clientele.”
He offers a range of services, starting with a quick wash and running to complete interior and exterior detailing, polishing and waxing. He admits he’s a little obsessive-compulsive, though this isn’t a bad trait for cleaning up a vehicle.
“I just really, really enjoy cleaning cars,” he says. “It turns out people will pay me to clean their cars.”
During the interview, he’s busy drying a Tesla after a wash and likes the fact he can see the vehicle transformed in a short time.
“This thing’s going to look good,” he says.
Electric vehicles, he adds, are a little different. The Tesla has many different features from traditional automobiles, right down to not having a radiator grill, which makes it a bit easier to clean.
In a way, the detailing work is therapeutic. He can listen to music while he’s working and really bury himself in what’s doing. At the base he works as an aircraft structures technician in the aviation life support equipment shop from 3 to 11 p.m.
“Everything on a plane expires … the life preservers, the helmets the pilots wear, all the safety equipment,” he says. “We just got to make sure it’s still good.”
This leaves his mornings and early afternoons for his detailing jobs.
From Alberta, Bailey would like to settle in the Comox Valley once he’s finished in the military. In the meantime, he’s hoping to get the word out about the detailing work he’s doing, as well as the help he’s offering to injured vets and emergency personnel to keep their vehicles looking good.
“It’s just something little I can do,” he says.
He can be contacted by calling 778-585-0586 or emailing email@example.com.