The Hilton Head Island Concours d'Elegance & Motoring Festival is this weekend, and it has us thinking about cars -- specifically, the first ones we owned.
Thanks to Hilton Head Island resident Michael Brock for sharing the story of his father's car that he was able to restore:
"Growing up working in my dad's Phillips 66 Service station, I was around (and under) cars from an early age. When I graduated high school and went off to college in the summer of 1968, Dad bought a 1955 Chevy Bel-Air two-door hardtop and began to restore it.
"He died of cancer three years later, and I inherited his unfinished business. I was newly married, had just had my first child and was still in college. A few years later, I realized I didn't have the time or the money to finish the work Dad had started so I parked that old '55 in an Indiana barn belonging to a buddy. It was 1977.
"Fast forward 30 years to Father's Day, 2007. I'm retired and now have the resources to do a complete restoration. I literally pulled the car out of the barn and up on a trailer and delivered it to a barn in South Carolina. With the vision and genius of Frank Craft of Craft Restorations, we started a complete frame-off makeover.
"Four months into the project, a barn fire destroyed the rolling chassis. Fortunately, the body, glass and interior were in a different barn on the property. So, we found another 1955 Chevy frame and started over, adding a 2008 350 engine, a 1968 transmission, power steering, disc brakes and air conditioning for the hot South Carolina summers.
"It's now candy-apple red, and we call it 'The Heartbeat' because it's still running."
- Hilton Head Island Motoring Festival & Concours d'Elegance website
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- My First Car: '(It is) like something a Power Puff Girl would drive'
- My First Car: 'I finally learned my lesson when I ran out of gas the third time'