Howard and Wanda Tarnoff of Port Orange, Fl now own this stunning 1936 Ford Deluxe Roadster. One of only 3862 built it now takes on a whole new dimension. Powered by the early 354 Hemi (1956- bored and stroked) with Chrysler 727 trans, there’s no way Henry Ford could ever have envisioned how beautiful this car was to become.

  This feature car isn’t however without it’s sadder story. Howard’s “brother of another mother” had started this project long ago completing his dream before passing away. Dr. John Favaloro was an Oral Surgeon who since childhood had hung around the Massachusetts car scene. Howard and “Doc” shared the same passion for life, cars - and even appeared together at the Detroit Autorama in 2009, each with their own cool rides!

  They had one of those bonds that was thicker than blood. Their families were forever entwined, inseparable in their zest for life and all that embodied the spirit of their camaraderie, fun, laughter and enthusiasm to live every day to the fullest. And then in December Doc told Howard he was to be the caretaker – someday -  for this dream ride conceived in perfection as only Doc could execute.  John’s wife Cathy, Wanda’s “sister of another mother” asked them to purchase the car to satisfy John’s wishes so it would be in the care of “family” and they did; to honor and remember John forever.

Dr. John Favaloro, as Howard was quick to point out, had a smile that would light up any room. His spirit and energy lives on in Libby as John did a lot of work on his project himself. His attention to detail was impeccable, remember this car is all steel. It’s one piece “clam shell” hood was custom made as was the original hood sides, modified to fit around that monster motor! 

Painted a PPG orange metallic (custom blend) and with only 252 miles on it when arriving in Florida it screams “look at me”! The all- English Hides interior (Garette Leather products) and rumble seat were finished by Fred Carrilo in Warwick, RI. The custom Birds Eye Maple dash and “Banjo” steering wheel was handled by Juliano’s Street Rod Parts. Wiring was by Skip Readio and Xtreme Restorations handled the paint and final assembly which included the Ford Currie 9 inch and Kugel custom front end components. She rolls on artillery wheels with one-off wheel covers of John’s design shod with Diamond Back Classic wide whites 195/75/14 front and 235/75/15 out back. It stops promptly with the help of Wilwood 4-wheel disc brakes.

There’s not a day that doesn’t go by that Howard and Wanda don’t remember their life-long friend and “brother”. While this car is an example of something physical, however beautiful, it’s much more than that. It’s “Libby”, it is memories shared, laughter still heard and that unmistakable smile that is all John. Cars can be replaced, they find new homes of course, but memories and special people - priceless! “I miss you Brother every day!” says Howard.


Article and photos by Gary Rosier

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