It won't give you everything, it's true, but Radford and Cordy were probably not considering the importance of a Corvette when they wrote the golden oldie "Money" way back when. If they had, the lyrics might have been rewritten to include the price of such an endeavor. But as we all know, the price of your chosen vintage of plastic is nothing compared to the joy of owning it. Just ask Dean Wandry of Highlands Ranch, Colorado, if you need a second opinion.
Dean had been looking for his childhood dream for many years and finally came across this '59 in Inca Silver paint when a young woman in Arizona decided an older Corvette was too much to maintain after a few short months of ownership. She had acquired it from a dealer who had purchased the Vette from a man in San Diego who had kept the car since at least 1976 (all records from years prior have been purged). But what made Dean decide that a Corvette was his must-have for transportation? It all started when...
It definitely came off an artist's drawing board, not out of a wind tunnel." In the end, Dean maintained his dream for over 40 years, getting married, raising four children, working through several careers, and then finally retiring. It was then that he was able to refocus on his original plan, and the day finally arrived when he drove his cool car home to show his wife. "She stood in the driveway and cried, saying, 'I didn't know this was what you wanted. It's beautiful,'" Dean remembers.
Back in high school, Dean drove the family '49 Buick. Then, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and became stationed overseas; so as such, he never experienced the fantasy most youngsters have-to own a great car. But he still had his dreams, even though all of his money was being saved for something a little more important than a vehicle-a college education. So, in the meantime, Dean would own everything from a '55 Chevy to a '58 MGA 1500. But rated at 78 hp, the British roadster seemed to be getting further away from his dreams of owning his cool car; specifically, a '59-60 Corvette. "When they removed the heavy chrome from the '58, the car was just perfect to me," Dean tells us. "It had graceful lines, seemed beefy with the dual headlights, and looked ready to spring away from the stop light.
As with all older builds, the '59 needed a little work right from the get-go. When the roadster was purchased, the body and chrome were in good shape, and everything was straight enough that it looked as if the Vette had never been hit. But the engine was a different story and was a "hodge-podge of correct and incorrect pieces" that had been rebuilt with someone else's spare parts. On top of that, the engine wasn't the only item that needed a rebuild.