In 1974 George was about to graduate high school and his parents agreed to help him purchase his first car. George remembers they went late one evening, after school, to the Pontiac dealership. George distinctly remembers checking off boxes, choosing specific options for the GTO, which happened to be the only GTO delivered to that dealership that year (a detail that will help George identify this car later in life). George had added some features to the vehicle after he purchased it that made it unique (another key factor helping him find his car). He told me that the driver’s side vent was disconnected because it would leak and flood the foot bed after it rained so the dealership disconnected it and calked it shut (apparently standard back then). Living in Ohio he took some preventative care and added rust proofing features: the tail lights had a gap and the trunk always leaked water so he slathered it with RTV silicone so it wouldn't leak.
5 years ago, George, his friend since high school, and their wives, met up halfway between their houses to get together and grab dinner and go to a car show.
His friend called him and told him he thought he found his car at this car show so George wandered through the show and found him. Sure enough, the disconnected vent and caulk, the RTV and the rust proofing he had done were still on the car, 42 years later!!!! The current owner had the information from the Pontiac Historical Society that traced the GTO back to the year and dealership where George bought his car so he KNEW it was his.
George gave him his business card and said if you ever want to sell it give him a call, but the owner planned on giving it to his son and not selling. A couple of weeks ago George got an email at work from the current owner who said he was going to sell the GTO and wanted to give Mr the first option to buy it.
George said that was all he could think about all day. He called his wife, whom he was dating when he bought the car, and without hesitation she said, “We are buying the car!” This was the car they took to their senior prom and drove it until 1982 when he sold it and bought a 1980 Honda CB750F motorcycle (which he still owns).
George, Denise and their son got to drive the GTO last Saturday and are all happy to have it back! He said he plans on attending more shows this summer and going to a show on Father’s Day weekend at the Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens. He said since it is nearing prom season they are going to drive the car to his wife's childhood home where their prom pictures were taken so they can get an updated picture with his “original car and original wife.”