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George Reitenour passing

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  • George Reitenour passing

    Received word from a friend that George had passed away on Thursday. If you did not know him he is probably best known for his knowledge of Studebaker watches and his '36 Dictator coupe (he had several Studebakers) that he drove in numerous rallies with his friend and navigator Al Hadley. George is shown at left in the photo below, Al at right. George lived most of his life in Portland, Indiana but had moved to Tennessee after retirement. A very nice story on George and his Dictator is in the May 1995 Turning Wheels. RIP George

    Richard Quinn
    Editor emeritus: Antique Studebaker Review

  • #2
    RIP, George.

    'Great stories of George and the late Dale McPhearson piloting George's Dictator in The Great American Race back in the day. 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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    • #3
      Another close Studebaker Drivers Club friend to whom I was never (locally) close. I can’t recall exactly when, but it was years ago I first met George with his array of watches. At our first encounter, memories of my Grandfather, a watchmaker, came flooding back. My Grandfather died when I was 6 years old, but I have never forgotten his shop, display cases, and the huge roll-top desk. Meeting George rekindled those memories and established a sort of “kinship” of mutual conversational interest between us.

      No matter where, near or far, at swap meets and events I’ve attended across the country, I always made it a point to seek out George, catch up on his exploits, acquisitions, and see what he had for sale. Me, being the CASO I am, didn’t buy much, but George always treated me with patience and dignity. I did my best to return the same.
      Even as his health began to decline, he was kind enough to take a couple of my watches and give them a good going over. Now, just as the one I have from my Grandfather, those that were touched by George, will be even more special.
      Rest in peace, George, and prayers and sympathy go out to his family and all the other SDC friends near and far.
      John Clary
      Greer, SC

      SDC member since 1975

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      • #4
        I have many happy memories of George going back 40 years. I remember him telling me that his expertise in repairing Studebaker watches was self-taught. I also remember well his participation in The Great American Race. We will miss him very much. RIP George.

        Stu Chapman

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        • #5
          I use to look forward to chatting with him at the international meets re watches and Studebakers Yet another notable Studebaker friend is lost
          Milt

          1947 Champion (owned since 1967)
          1961 Hawk 4-speed
          1967 Avanti
          1961 Lark 2 door
          1988 Avanti Convertible

          Member of SDC since 1973

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          • #6
            RIP, George. I can remember him from way back in the early days. I think he had a pace car 1962 Lark back then. I sold a 64 convertible to his son a few years back. Sure sorry to hear he passed.

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            • #7
              RIP George. Now all the people in Heaven with Studebaker/South Bend watches have a repairman. I knew him well and always enjoyed talking with him at the national meets. Prayers to his Wife and family. stupak

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              • #8
                Didn't know George as well as many of you, but whenever I saw him he was willing to talk about whatever I brought up. This was usually his competition in the Great American Race. Naturally watches came up often. He will indeed be missed by many of us. Prayers go out for his family and friends.
                Joe Roberts
                '61 R1 Champ
                '65 Cruiser
                Eastern North Carolina Chapter

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                • #9
                  George was one of those Studebaker friends that I looked forward to visiting with. Over the decades, we visited in many parts of the country. My condolences to his family.
                  Gary L.
                  Wappinger, NY

                  SDC member since 1968
                  Studebaker enthusiast much longer

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                  • #10
                    George visited the Southern Arizona Chapter a few times during our annual chapter banquet in January. Lots of funny tales about the Great Race in the 1936 Dictator Coupe. The stories were always fascinating of the things that happened, like the brakes going out on a downhill mountain grade. RIP George.

                    Bob Miles

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                    • #11
                      Another good Studebaker guy gone. RIP George.
                      Skip Lackie

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                      • #12
                        First person I saw at my first meet

                        Originally posted by BobPalma View Post
                        RIP, George.

                        'Great stories of George and the late Dale McPhearson piloting George's Dictator in The Great American Race back in the day. BP
                        My wife and I attended our first International meet at Springfield in 1991. As we were arriving at the meet, we met a 1936 red and silver coupe with a Great American Road Race sign on the door. He gave us a big smile and wave, and I knew it was going to be a good thing. Since then we have seen him at many Studebaker gatherings. He always had that smile and handshake. I think her remembered me, but he had that same sweet greeting for everyone. He reminded me of my father who also loved to work on watches, clocks, and guns. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him. I will remember him for the goodness and pleasantness that he brought to a world that so badly needs it.

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                        • #13
                          I remember one year coming into south bend for the swap meet & stopping at a yard sale (remember when lots of yard sales had studebaker parts which employees had carried home years earlier?). I bought an old wind up mantle clock that didn't work. I carried it into the swap meet & George was able to diagnose the problem quickly & gave me instructions how to fix it myself easily.
                          Mike Sal

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                          • #14
                            May he rest in peace. George was one of those people who was easy to talk to and to know. Thank you George for all that you have done for Studebaker and the SDC.
                            sigpicSee you in the future as I write about our past

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                            • #15
                              I'm sorry to hear of his passing. He repaired two Hamilton railroad watches for me (one was my dad's and one was my grandfather's). He also straightened me out on a watch that I bought thinking it was a Studebaker. George pointed out (politely) that the face was wrong, it was actually a South Bend. I always enjoyed chatting with him (to learn more about Studebaker and South Bend watches).
                              Paul Johnson, Wild and Wonderful West Virginia.
                              '64 Daytona Wagonaire, '64 Avanti R-1, Museum R-4 engine, '72 Gravely Model 430 with Onan engine

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