The Robinson’s family pickup keeps truckin’

Dan McCracken

Wayne: One of the first memories I have of meeting Miranda’s parents, Jim and Joyce Watterworth, is of a truck cab in Jim’s shop. I had no clue what it’d look like completed. That changed, as Jim had no problem sharing with me (or anyone) his ideas for the ’49 Ford.

His vision slowly took shape: sandblasted and painted frame; Chevy small-block (engines were his specialty); Golden Oak stain for the interior (same color as Joyce’s kitchen cupboards). The truck was all him.

Miranda: Mom passed in 2009. When Dad found his way back from that, the truck was waiting. He was nearly finished when he got sick. Limited physically, he sat at the kitchen table making lists of parts needed.

In 2014, five months after cancer diagnoses, his list turned into ours. The truck moved to storage until a friend of a friend found someone to finish it. Enter Rob Burkholder. If Rob and Dad had ever met, they would’ve talked old cars for hours. Rob lost his battle with cancer in 2017. We are so thankful for the work he did.

Ford F47 front three quarter grave site
Courtesy Robinson Family

Dad had said our son Jesse, who often sat in the cab pretending to drive, should get the first ride. Yet in 2019, Jesse was killed by a drunken driver. His ride was with Wayne and me, leading his funeral procession. The truck lost power outside the cemetery and had just enough momentum to coast through the gates. Jesse and the truck weren’t ready to go there.

As Dad would have, we’ve been driving the truck. Dad meant a lot to people; this truck means a lot too.




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    She is, without a doubt, a sweetheart. Probably would be better with a rebuilt flat head powering her but she’s still a sweetheart. In my mind, that truck is a “she” because, on our farm, all the old or older trucks had female names like Jessie or Fredrica (Mom hated that) or Sally or Sarah.

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