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Merged: Horrible news! 50 Studebakers among items destroyed in Chesnee fire

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  • Merged: Horrible news! 50 Studebakers among items destroyed in Chesnee fire



    For any of us who keep these vintage treasures...FIRE is a nightmare lurking in the back of our minds. Just a few minutes ago, I caught a brief blurb on a local evening news broadcast, that my good friend and very long time SDC member, David Walker, suffered a fire in one of his buildings today. I was busy and not paying close attention to the report, but when they mentioned that it was a fire on Studebaker Road...I instantly knew who they were discussing. From the short view (after I started paying attention) it looks like the fire was in one of his older buildings. The problem is that this is one of his largest buildings and could have contained some very rare unique Studebaker vehicles. From the report...seems like his big motor-home Greyhound type converted bus was a total loss. They only mentioned vintage cars with no specific details.

    I want to go see him and offer my support, but figure he will be up to his eyeballs dealing with the aftermath. I sent him a brief e-mail offering my support and prayers. David and Sandra are some of the best and hardest working people I know. Any of you who have been to their restaurant know that they are also one of the classiest and best ambassadors for all things Studebaker. Hopefully, things are not as bad as I fear, but it didn't look good. If I get better information...I'll let everyone know. I sure hate it when something like this hits our Studebaker family.
    John Clary
    Greer, SC

    SDC member since 1975

  • #2
    On my trip to Florida last year I visited David Walker and got a guided tour of his buildings and cars. That motor home bus was pristene and almost new condition. The attached buildings were full of Studes. He is a great guy. I wish him well in dealing with this.

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    • #3
      Hate this for David. He is such a nice person.
      Neil Thornton

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      • #4
        Very upsetting news, so sorry for them.
        sigpic1957 Packard Clipper Country Sedan

        "There's nothing stronger than the heart of a volunteer"
        Lt. Col. Jimmy Doolittle
        "I have a great memory for forgetting things" Number 1 son, Lee Chan

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        • #5
          Dang! 'Hate to read of this. Please post any news items that appear locally, John. Thanks. BP
          We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

          Ayn Rand:
          "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

          G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

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          • #6
            What terrible news this is. David is a great guy. He and his wife will be in my thoughts and prayers.
            Joe Roberts
            '61 R1 Champ
            '65 Cruiser
            Eastern North Carolina Chapter

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            • #7
              Is it South Carolina? Which County do the Walkers live in? Looking for the NBC News station.
              StudeRich
              Second Generation Stude Driver,
              Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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              • #8
                Here's a news article I found. It says 50 Studebakers were destroyed; likely the entire Walker collection. What a loss.. Not only did David and Sandra have a lot of really, really nice cars, some of them were quite rare, and a couple were even prototypes. Like everyone has said, those two are a class act and about as genuine as people come. I hope things somehow work out for the better for them.

                http://www.foxcarolina.com/story/210...n-chesnee-fire

                Pics: http://www.foxcarolina.com/slideshow?widgetid=73044

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                • #9
                  I don't know them, but I am awful sorry to hear of this. Thankfully is says no one was injured.

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                  • #10
                    Heartbreaking to think about.
                    No deceptive flags to prove I'm patriotic - no biblical BS to impress - just ME and Studebakers - as it should be.

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                    • #11
                      Geeze, that is terrible, to see the slide show. Hopefully, a few bits and pieces will be salvagable. BP
                      We've got to quit saying, "How stupid can you be?" Too many people are taking it as a challenge.

                      Ayn Rand:
                      "You can avoid reality, but you cannot avoid the consequences of avoiding reality."

                      G. K. Chesterton: This triangle of truisms, of father, mother, and child, cannot be destroyed; it can only destroy those civilizations which disregard it.

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                      • #12
                        How's this for making your stomach churn? Absolutely nothing left of those cars or the building.

                        Last edited by mbstude; 02-06-2013, 05:34 PM.

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                        • #13
                          That is terrible Matt, I know they are great people and had awesome vehicles, that restored RV Greyhound Bus would be a horrific loss.

                          I wish them Godspeed with their recovery.

                          It appears that a Flight or a Power Hawk just like mine may have survived in the Carport.
                          StudeRich
                          Second Generation Stude Driver,
                          Proud '54 Starliner Owner

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                          • #14
                            This is terrible. Such good people, such nice cars. I always look forward to seeing what great car David brings to each meet.

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                            • #15
                              The picture Matt posted shows much more damage than the actual news broadcast showed. To the right of what you see (out of view) is their multi-level colonial home. Even further to the right is his newest shop and the old homestead log cabin that graced the back cover of Turning Wheels a few months ago.

                              I'm thinking about the rare 8 door 51 limo, the 1800's farm wagon still showing the factory paint, the three door diesel crew cab, a 55 Studebaker NASCAR vintage racer once belonging to the Allisons, multiple Avantis, two four-wheel drive C-cabs...and the list goes on...

                              I know that in the newer building (not pictured), he has a rare 41 (I think) President 8 cylinder coupe in the latter stages of restoration, and I think two 48 convertibles, one champion and a commander. Even with good insurance...how do you put a value on a life's work of collecting and restoring? It is just hard to grasp.
                              John Clary
                              Greer, SC

                              SDC member since 1975

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