Daily Features

MARCH 2016: A 1968 FIREBIRD IS A FATHER’S LAST GIFT TO HIS DAUGHTER

By on March 13, 2016

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A conversation with a local car guy led to one of the more emotional stories about why somebody owns a car.

 

 

‘The car was a 1968 Firebird and the owner was a young woman who kept her father’s memory alive with the car.’

 

This story began when the local car guy pointed at a flawless 1968 Firebird convertible that was parked across the street.

 

 

He knew the previous owner and was well aware of his sizable investment in the Firebird’s restoration.

 

 

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The former owner channeled enough cash into the car to retire the debt load accrued by small countries and the result was stunning to say the least. The first-gen Firebird convertible is flawless and it caught the attention of a young woman named Tracy Hayden when the car hit the market.

 

 

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As mentioned earlier, the former owner’s investment into the car was huge and his asking price for the car was high enough for Tracy to wonder whether he was serious about selling the Firebird. Tracy pushed him on the car and eventually convinced him to sell her the Firebird.

 

 

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A first-gen Firebird was Pontiac’s entry into the pony car wars of the late 60s. The cars were an alternative to GM’s Camaro when both models debuted in 1967. The Camaro was a runaway hit for the General while the Firebird enjoyed modest success by comparison to its GM pony car stable mate.

 
Nevertheless, the first-gen Pontiac Firebird has a strong and loyal following- including Tracy, a young woman who was born decades after the first Firebird hit the Pontiac showroom. Tracy’s first car was a 1982 Firebird TA and she really liked that car, but it was not a first generation Firebird.

 

 

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Tracy’s love of cars was inherited from her late father. Her dad was a mechanic by trade and a car guy by choice. His love of cars was something that caught Tracy’s attention and it was easy for her to become interested in the old car hobby because of her father.

 

 
Tracy’s father always wanted her to own her dream car and hoped she would get her opportunity one day. Unfortunately he passed away in 2014 and Tracy lost the most influential car guy in her life. He was the man who helped shape her into a dyed-in-the-wool car girl and Tracy did not have to ponder very long before she figured out how to honor his memory.

 

 

 

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Her father had left her enough estate money to buy her dream car: a first generation Pontiac Firebird. The opportunity to purchase a show quality 1968 Firebird convertible was the answer to Tracy’s dreams because her dream was shared by her father and his memory would ride along with every time she drove the car.

 

 
We saw a mint 1968 Firebird convertible when we looked across the street that day.

 

‘Little did we know that car would become only part of a bigger story about the unbreakable bond between a father and his daughter.’

 

 

Jim Sutherland

 

 

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