It was 1979 when Robert Crum climbed into his stepbrother’s father’s 1965 Pontiac GTO Judge and slid behind the steering wheel. hey what 12
“I want this car,” he said to himself, sitting there in the driver’s seat, years away from legal driving age. “Someday I want to have a car like this one.”
It took while.
Forty years later, the Ellettsville man saw a 1969 GTO Judge, with the original engine, for sale on eBay. Crum had been looking for the right car several years. He had sold his late father’s antique gun collection and after raising four kids was able to afford the car he had always wanted.
He and his wife, Shelly, talked at length about the 2019 purchase. “We were either going to use the money to remodel the kitchen or buy the car,” he said. “She said to buy the car.”
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Shelly Crum knew her husband had longed for a GTO. “He talked about this one for days and days, and I told him to just call about it but, he didn’t,” his wife said. So she phoned the owner in Chicago and gave a $500 down payment to hold the car so her husband could go see it in person.
“I had been looking for years, and this one was priced well,” Crum said. “I had wanted a blue car, but when I saw this, I fell in love with it.”
The car is Mayfair Maize, a warm yellow. It has distinctive pearl green side stripes that match perfectly a miniature collector die-cast ’69 GTO Crum found, yep, on eBay. He said the man he bought the car from said a previous owner had painted and striped the car, possibly after seeing the same custom accent on the toy.
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The car is pristine, inside and out. Except for a good-sized dent in the rear bumper where Crum hit the front end of a 1967 Chevy dump truck, “going about two miles an hour,” he said, defending himself.
The only factory options not on the car are electric seats and an eight-track tape player. It came equipped with bucket seats, power locks and windows and a rear-window defroster. Brand new 52 years ago, the fast car cost about $4,800.
I spied this beautiful Pontiac this week when I ventured to Bloomington’s west side to see the eclectic mix of cars that are displayed there Thursday evenings from 5 pm until the sun starts to set. I have not attended one car show this year, so it was great to see what was lined up, hoods up.
I never got past the Crums’ GTO.
Looking at the Cruisin’ Classics Chronicle newsletter later, I noticed a list local fall car shows. The Crums are missing the Oct. 2 Apple Festival show in Bloomfield, and so will I. I’m taking a week off, so there won’t be a My Favorite Ride column next week.
I want to tell Rosalind Greiner in Martinsville that I’ll be back to pursue the idea she passed along about great old cars she saw on a recent trip, vehicles of yore tucked away along the winding roads around French Lick.
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“I always read you column, and there are more interesting vehicles there than you can believe,” the 83-year-old Martinsville reader told me.
Look for me on those winding roads. And maybe at the Fall Foliage Festival Car Show at the Morgan County Fairgrounds Oct. 9, the Classic Car Show at Bloomington’s Switchyard Park Oct. 16 or the Dairy Queen Cruise-in at Bloomfield Oct. 24
Contact reporter Laura Lane at email@example.com, 812-331-4362 or 812-318-5967