BORN TO FLY
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BORN TO FLY

 

Photos and text by Gary Rosier

 

Meet Conrad Yelvington, one of 8 children, married to his wife Margaret for 66 years and still going strong. Yes, he still pilots his own aircraft (A Lear Jet) and obtained his license at age 17 in a J-3 cub. I remember reading about Chuck Yeager and ‘The Right Stuff‘ and Conrad certainly has all of that! It’s not just about the variety of aircraft he owns; 13 military vehicles, a variety of cars and motorcycles, but his drive to make things happen - his work ethic and determination.  Conrad is driven alright, both in business and collecting. School was but a stepping stone to greater things to come. He completed the 9th grade and was off to make his mark on the world.

 

Now, you can imagine as one of 8 children, times were tough. The war, the economy, life was hard and money was scarce. All of this contributed to making him hungry for bigger and better things. He worked hard, starting up a stone business from scratch. Then he added sod, trucking, and grew it all out to 300 employees in 5 states. Point of all this is that once he could afford the finer things in life, he went after them with all the vigor and determination and passion that was his life. 

 

Such it is that brings us to this beautiful 32 Dearborn Deuce Roadster. Acquired in September 2012 from Mecum Auctions in Dallas, Texas. Conrad saw the car on an ad from AutaBuy.com, got in his jet, and flew in to see and bid on the car. He was the winning bidder too and so took possession and added it to his collection of cars which include a 55 T-Bird (an Amos Minter‘s car!), a 48 Mercury, assorted Military vehicles and aircraft.

 

Powered by a Bill Mitchell Chevy 454 boasting 625hp/575ftlbs of torque, a 350 Chevy automatic trans with Genie floor shifter, Heidts aluminum super IRS rear end, Dual Quads, and MSD Ignition. Vintage air/heat, Ididit tilt wheel and steering, So-Cal front disc’s, chrome driveshaft and exhaust, power windows and door openers, flush valve stems and smoothed sidewalls too rounds out some of the other goodies. It’s painted a deep black with flames and red leather interior. A black German canvas top rarely sees any use in the Florida Sunshine much like the secret audio stereo that is hidden away nicely. This early roadster was born to Fly he says, just like Conrad himself! 

 

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Ellenton, United States
27.04.2017 (27.04.2017)
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