The sale of a classic car in the middle of an on-the-block restoration raised nearly $80,000 for two Canadian children whose parents were killed in an accident.
The Red Deer Advocate said Brent and Nicole Keryluke were killed May 5 when their motorcycle collided with a truck. The couple’s young children — Liam, 3, and Arielle, 6 — were left in the care of their grandparents, Ben and Marilyn Keryluke.
Brent had begun restoring a 1973 Pontiac Parisienne before his death. Ben said his son wanted the four-door instead of a muscle car, “so the whole family could ride around in it.”
Ben and Marilyn had not planned to sell the car but were forced to do so after bills began to mount. Bill had been semi-retired before the accident and both children have hearing impairments that require hearing aids and appointments with specialists in Calgary.
The car was taken to an auction last weekend and buyers — and sellers — stepped up in a big way to help the family.
The first buyer, Rob McWilliam of Red Deer Motors, bought the car for $29,000 and immediately donated it back to the family so it could be sold again.
The second buyer, Edmonton resident Danny Fayad, paid $30,000 for the Parisienne and, like McWilliam, immediately gave it back so the car could hit the block a third time.
The final buyer, Bob Bevins, paid $20,000 and passed the keys back to the family so Brent’s legacy and love of the car would live on with Brent’s children.
“I knew our buyers and sellers would step up to help, but I didn’t expect anything like that,” Lindsay Schwindt, who runs Electric Garage Auctions with her husband. The Schwindts waived their commissions and other fees for the sales.
In addition to the $79,000 raised through the sales, Schwindt said she saw attendees handing cash to the family.
“My heart was absolutely full… I still get choked up talking about it,” she told the Advocate.
The Canadian Broadcasting Company said the family was given more than $100,000 after everything was said and done at the auction.
A GoFundMe for the family had raised another $81,000 as of midweek.
Ben said there was no way the family would sell the Parisienne after the outpouring of kindness. He said he hoped Liam and Arielle would one day get to take the car for a spin.
“Hopefully, they can enjoy their father’s car when they get older,” he told the CBC.