Bill W 1957 Oldsmobile 88

First Car, Retirement Car

I was due to get my drivers license on my 17th birthday in Jan '68, a month before my girlfriends neighbor was going to junk his 1957 Oldsmobile Super 88 4drsn. I asked him why he was junking the car I always admired. It was black, had that distinctive 3 piece rear window and dual exhaust that made the 371 V8 engine purr. He said it need a freeze out plug and a universal joint, he said he was getting a '61 Pontiac, and could get $15 for the Olds at the junkyard. I handed him $15 and I had my first car. My girlfriend Sue helped me clean up the Olds and we pulled off 3 sets of seat covers, underneath those seat covers was the original factory grey cloth upholstery in mint condition. I bought a freeze out plug for $.25 and a universal joint for $2.00. I was able to replace the plug by myself and had the help of my future father in law to replace the universal. The '57 had 15 inch bald tires and the ad in the paper advertised 15 inch tires for $19 each, only problem was they didn't fit the Olds, they were $35 a piece that I couldn't afford. I settled on a narrower tire for $25 each. At 17 I was on the road in a 1957 Olds.

My girlfriend Sue & I went everywhere in that car, drive-in's, New York City, parties, I picked her up at her school almost everyday. She bought me a 8 track tape player for it and a white stuffed kitten whose eyes were directional blinkers and brake lights. I taught her how to drive in the Olds. We had a lot of fun in that car and didn't realize the memories we were making.

By July 1969 I had graduated Vocational High School and was enlisted in the U.S. Navy, Sue had a 1960 Valiant, The '57 Olds needed a Starter, new exhaust system and new tires, Sue wanted me to give her the Olds, but I couldn't help her with the cost of needed repairs because I just bought her an engagement ring. So Sue kept her 1960 Valiant, I went in the Navy and the Olds went to the wreckers.

We got married and every time we got a different car we both thought of the '57 Olds. Sue always felt I should have let her fix up the Olds and was mad that I sent it to the boneyard.

Four children and five grandchildren I was retired and looking at '57 Oldsmobiles on Ebay, It was just before Christmas 2009 and I saw a Red & White '57 olds 88 4dr Hardtop, it was in pretty good shape and I showed it to Sue. We both knew it was something we wanted and now realized the memories it held for us. We bid on it and won. We had the car shipped from Miami, Fl and when it arrived I was like a kid again. When the flatbed driver rolled it off his truck, I was ready to take it for a spin, but just like a kid getting a new toy at Christmas with no batteries, the driver was embarrassed to tell us he loaded the Olds on the flatbed without the keys, he promised he have then sent overnight to me and I'd have them by Noon the next day. so we pushed it in the garage and I had to wait.

Since we got the car I've done some work to it. Fixing a leaking freeze out plug and changing the universal joint among them. I chaned the windshied, I took a auto body / paint course at adult ed and did a repaint and with Sue's help I re-upholstered the seats and door panels. Right now the Engine is out being rebuilt and I have the intake manifold to make it a J2 with 3 two barrel carbs. We've gotten use to going to Classic Car Show and Cruise Nights making new memories. Sue bought me the same white stiffed kitten for the back window, we go to Christmas and St Patrick's Day Parades the the Grandkids. While waiting in line at a Christmas parade my 3 year old grandson asked if he could sit in my lap while we waited. He was in my lap as i was turned looking in my granddaughters in the back seat when he tapped me on the shoulder saying "Papa what's this" when i looked he was holding my speedometer needle in his hand, it was then I remembered my speedometer glass was missing. I said put it in the ash tray and sit in back with your sister. A new memory I won't soon forget.

Last year we bought a 1962 Olds Dynamic 88 Convertible and we're offical Classic Car Nuts. We've won a dozen trophies with the '57 and 2 with the '62

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