The year was 1925 when my grandfather bought his new Ford Model T, the first “affordable automobile that opened travel to the common middle-class American.” My Dad, Charles “Butch” Buttgereit, was six years old that year, and as a Christmas gift his parents gave him a cast-iron toy replica of that same model. Butch, who will turn 95 on September 10, lives in a retirement living apartment at Concordia at Cabot and still has that toy car. It sits on the bookcase in his living room. He often shares his memories of riding in the “Tin Lizzy” with his parents.
Listening to his stories and knowing his delight in them, I thought of a friend, Tim Neubert of Cabot, PA, who happens to own a similar 1925 Model T. I thought about how much it would mean to my Dad to get to ride in one again. When asked, Mr. Neubert was very pleased to give my Dad the opportunity, and we arranged a time to drive down memory lane.
On a recent Thursday evening, Mr. Neubert drove up to the front entrance of Haven 3 in his clean, shiny black carriage. It caught the attention and excitement of the residents there who happened to be waiting for the Concordia bus to go to an activity/event. Many of them had their own memories of such a vehicle. Mr. Neubert was happy to answer questions and give demonstrations of the car’s features. He has owned the car for 10 years and has skillfully worked on its mechanics, body, and interior to restore it to its original beauty and performance.
We had a most enjoyable country drive, waving to people who smiled at our passing and giving them an “ooga” greeting from the car’s nostalgic horn. We stopped for dinner at a local restaurant, sharing stories and reminiscing some more before returning to Concordia with a brand new memory. It was so sweet to share a ride with my Dad in this vintage car designed and built by Henry Ford who was determined to make it so “low in price that no man making a good salary will be unable to own one—and enjoy with his family the blessing of hours of pleasure in God’s great open spaces.”
Indeed, Mr. Ford, indeed. Thank you, Mr. Neubert, for sharing with us such a wonderful memory!
For more information on Concordia's worry-free retirement communities in Cabot, Pittsburgh or Copley, Ohio, visit the Retirement Living section of our website. You can also e-mail us here or call 724-352-1571 for general questions.