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The rescue from the fires - Oct 19

This fantastic little single cylinder Cadillac was one of the 1st automotive victims of the catastrophic “Summer of Bushfires” during 2019-20 on the east coast of Australia. News of the loss was broadcast throughout the car movement and on social and mainstream media. Having been burnt out and losing many, many cars in a previous bushfire, Chris & I had the greatest amount of sympathy for their loss. Some weeks later, just after the completion of the 7th HCCA International tour, Penny’s son Ross rang to enquire if I had any interest in re-restoring the Cadillac. Our good friend Steve Hammatt from Seattle was still visiting with us after the International tour and we had planned to go to Bundaberg, Queensland for the National Veteran Tour, taking my 1918 Cadillac, so after some discussion Steve and I decided to detour via Tenterfield to look at the Cadillac. What a sad sight both the house and the cars were! What was left of the Vauxhall remained in the burnt-out shell of the house and the Cadillac had been moved to a nearby shed that had survived the fires. I took a video of the wreckage and plenty of photos of the Cadillac.

Discussions took place over the fate of the Cadillac, both at home in Mudgee and with the Stanbridge’s, deciding whether the car was salvageable and what was need to both purchase and complete the re-restoration. Chris had a real soft spot for Cyril & Penny and always admired the little Caddy painted with Penny’s decoupage roses and was determined that it could be restored and that she wanted the little Caddy!


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