A Passion for Cars

Vintage cars line the parking lot, the chrome glinting in the sunlight and engines rev as the owners show off their prized possessions. Some of them have been restoring these cars for years and others have coveted these cars since they were kids.

Last Saturday, the school hosted their annual car show, where people in the community come and bring their vintage or overall impressive vehicles to show off. Even though the cars are judged and the best one wins the overall show, the owners mostly come to show off something they have dedicated most of their life to and to share their stories.

Contestant Kim Walker and her husband both attended the event, bringing in a car that her husband has wanted since he was young. Both her and her husband comfortably joke and laugh, each one familiar with the car show atmosphere.

“This car is a 1970 and a half Camaro Z28. We got this car because of a middle age crisis, no actually, when me and my husband met over 25 years ago he had a 1978 Camaro and he has always wanted a 1970,” Walker said. “We decided to come to this show because our son graduated here, from West Johnston, last year and we drove three hours from Virginia to come here. Since we just recently have moved to Virginia, we have started to go to car shows there as well.”

Friends with Kim Walker and her husband, contestant Jed Honn sat beside them while his special edition car is admired across the parking lot. His car is most well known because of the Smokey and the Bandit movie, the car becoming wildly popular after it came out.

“I got a 1979 Trans AM special edition, affectionately known as the bandit edition. I’ve only had it five years, but that was my dream car growing up, that’s what I always wanted and I found it and tried to buy it and it kind of fell through and seven years later my wife surprised me on my 40th birthday, not with that car, but with the deal that I could find one and buy it,” Honn said. “This is the first time I have participated in the West Johnston show. I came two years ago to look, but this is the first time I’ve brought my car, and I’m in Goldsboro, so I do a lot of car shows over there.”

Contestant Chris Phillips has been going to car shows and showing his car for four and half years, remembering his dad and making people smile at each one he goes to.

“In 1966, my father bought his first brand new car, I was with him, and it was a white 1966 Ford Fairlane. Now, this is not my father’s car, because I don’t have any way to trace that car, but this is close enough,” Phillips said. “Every time I sit in the car I can hear my father say to me, and I use to hate being called boy, “boy, crank the car, lets go.” And I get to be with my father one more time and it is amazing how much that means to me. This car, I wouldn’t sell for four times the worth of the car just because I get to ride with my father every time, so it’s gonna stay with me for a long time.”

He has gone through hardships to get the car that brings back so many memories, but he doesn’t seem to mind, as long as he can make himself and other people happy.

“Before I had this car, I had a 1942 two door Chevrolet sedan, looked like an old mobster car, and I traded that car for this 1966 Ford Fairlane 500,” Phillips said. “The reason why I traded the car is because I lost about 10,000 dollars in the trade, but sometimes it’s not always about money, sometimes it’s about the heart.”