Hudson Hornet being restored for disabled drivers

Hudson Hornet being restored for disabled drivers

Driving Aids Development Corporation, manufacturer for more than 30 years of hand-controlled driving equipment for those with disabilities.

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Old photo of the Hudson Hornet | Photo courtesy of Lee Parry

Driving Aids Development Corporation, manufacturer for more than 30 years of hand-controlled driving equipment for those with disabilities, will be at the AACA Eastern Regional Fall Meet, scheduled for October 7-10 in Hershey, Pennsylvania, to promote its Hudson Hornet Mobility Adventure and to raise money for the cause.

Lee Parry, owner of DADC, told Classic Car News he has seen how driving can inspire confidence, fitness and fun, and sees the Hudson Hornet Mobility Adventure is an extension of this work.

“The Hudson Hornet belonged to my father-in-law,” Perry said. “He purchased the Hudson from the original owner using money he saved from his paper route.”

According to Perry, his father-in-law made a lot of progress with the restoration, including body work and he got the engine running.
“All that needed to be done was re-assemble the car. He also planned on painting it a factory, ebony black, re-upholster the seats, and re-chrome some of the chrome.”

Unfortunately, Perry’s father-in-law suffered a stroke, which led to the Hudson sitting for about 10 years.

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Beginning stages of restoration

“I became his hands and told him about hand controls, my family business,” Perry said. “It was his inspiration to complete the restoration and invite people, like him, who are disabled to drive it. When he passed, he left the project to us with this goal.”

Perry is working with Jon Schuchart Customs in Columbia, Pennsylvania, to complete the project, which they estimate should take a year.

“We are looking to raise $35,000 to complete the restoration,” Perry said. “The great news is that we have all of the parts, and some extras to boot. It won’t be show condition, but that is not our goal. It will, however, be a solid, professional job for driving.”

After the Hudson in on the road at the first event, “Our goal is to have businesses help us sponsor events.”

“We’ve been talking with a number of race tracks who are interested in hosting events, as well as museums, businesses in the mobility industry, and veteran and disability associations. For example, the Ypsilanti Automotive Heritage Museum, home of the Hudson Hornet Museum, is doing a piece on us for their upcoming newsletter, so we are hoping to put something together with them.” Perry said.

Perry also wants to get involved in antique car rallies and parades, and put together a drive of historic Route 66 from Chicago to California with disabled drivers at the wheel each leg of the drive.
“We see running these events far into the future -– we want to have as many disabled folks drive the Hudson as possible -– through sponsored events, advertising, and service offerings like proms and weddings that will help pay for events.

“And we want to engage disabled car enthusiasts to help us with the up keep on the Hudson.” Perry said.

At the Hershey show, DADC will have a booth in the flea market area and will sell vintage classic car-themed T-shirts, aprons, note cards, signs, and other items that have been donated to raise money for the project.

For more information, visit the Hudson Hornet Mobility Project website.

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