Many of you might remember the ‘80s hit TV show Knight Rider starring a young David Hasselhoff as Michael Knight, a high-tech crime-fighter with an artificially intelligent and talking sidekick car named Knight Industries Two Thousand, or K.I.T.T., voiced by William Daniels.
This futuristic car was a highly modified 1982 Pontiac Trans Am with a redesigned nose featuring the iconic red lights that lit up as K.I.T.T. spoke and the impressive dashboard covered in buttons and lights.
In season two of the show, Knight and K.I.T.T. visit a children’s hospital after finding out a child needs a bone-marrow transplant in 72 hours in order to stay alive.
And who would be the only available donor? No other than a gang member wanted for murder. Sounds like a job for Michael Knight and K.I.T.T.
It was this episode that inspired Frank D’Angeli of Wakefield, Massachusetts, to bring K.I.T.T. alive once again, but this time with a different mission:
“My wife and I like to say that the original KITT made criminals cry, this KITT makes people smile,” D’Angeli told Boston 25 News.
On March 30, 2021, D’Angeli purchased a 1990 Pontiac Firebird in which he invested over $30,000 to restore and modify the car and launched his fundraiser KITT4Kids.
When it came time to complete the paint job, D’Angeli was out of cash. Luckily, three companies – Woburn Foreign Auto Body, Albrecht Auto Group and Finish Masters – donated $13,000 in supplies and labor to finish the job.
Making this project even more special, the now 94-year-old actor William Daniels recorded special messages to be played in D’Andeli’s recreation.
A few of the questions and phrases Daniels recorded include “how are you?” “what’s your name?” “hope you’re feeling better” and “thank you so much for having me.”
D’Angeli brings K.I.T.T. around to local hospitals, including Boston Children’s Hospital where he works, to greet each little patient and family members.
“To think that maybe I can do something that brings some happiness to people that are going through such heartache, that’s all you can ask for,” he said.
To learn more about KITT4Kids and to support D’Angeli’s foundation, visit the foundation’s GoFundMe page.