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AutoFair at Charlotte Motor Speedway


Photos by Dana Rapoport

I’m writing from the Charlotte AutoFair.  This event draws 80,000 people from all over the world.  It runs from Thursday through Sunday and has an active flea market filled with every car part you can imagine.  There were 1000 cars for sale in the car corral and various activities on the Charlotte Motor Speedway track which surrounds the fair.

By mid morning of the first day I already had covered 6 miles just trying to take it all in.

While walking through the vendor field on my way to a media event, a couple stopped me.  They saw my ClassicCars.com shirt and the man said, “I was really hoping you guys would be here.”  He was a kind, older gent who proceeded to hug me and say thank you.

“For what?” I replied puzzled and surprised.

And here is their story (though not their real names):

Bob and Mary met in 1967.  Bob was selling cars and at the time Mary was buying a car.  She bought a 1958 Chevy Impala from Bob and went on her way.  Turns out that Mary couldn’t afford the car so Bob was forced to go to her house to repossess the car.  They consider that their first date.

It led to three more dates and on the fifth date Bob proposed.  They married in early 1968 and are happily together for 46 years.  They raised two children and have five grandkids with one of the way.

Bob remained a passionate car guy and bought, restored and sold many a collector car in his time.  But the one car he truly wanted was the 1958 Chevy Impala that Bob had repossessed from Mary, which started their life together.

Bob began searching for that car through VIN searching but it was nowhere to be found.  So he then undertook a search for that year, make and model with the exact specifications of the car Mary had originally purchased.  Yup, you guessed it. Found and bought on ClassicCars.com.

Bob surprised Mary with that car this year and she told me through teary eyes how much it meant to her.  Bob was elated to have found the car easily and wanted everyone at ClassicCars.com to know because to him we gave him the next chapter in the Bob and Mary love story.

And that, folks, is just another reason I love being in this business because a classic car is more than just a car.  They re rolling stories.


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