Gary Finlen of Austintown is not new to the Austintown Senior Center cruises. He enjoys attending with his 56 or 57 Chevy pick up trucks, but last week he drove his latest ride, a 1924 Star Cabriolet.
''It's all original, and I am going to keep it as it is,'' Finlen said.
The vintage convertible has the original four-cyclinder engine and three-speed transmission. Finlen had some minor woodwork to do on the convertible frame, but other than that, the car was ready to run at a whopping 40 miles per hour.
Photo by J.T. Whitehouse, Town Crier
Gary Finlen was the hit of the Austintown Senior Center car show last week when he showed up in an original 1924 Star Cabriolet that seemed untouched by time.
''I don't want to push it much faster than that,'' he said.
Finlen said he got the car from neighbor Carol Bowyer. It belonged to Carol's husband, Ray, who was hoping to someday use it as a project. Unfortunately, Ray passed away about two years ago, and Carol made the decision to sell it this year.
''It has been in the barn for a long time with blankets over it,'' Carol said. ''I wanted it to go to someone who would appreciate it and take good care of it.''
She said that someone was Finlen, who had been involved in classic vehicles for close to 15 years. When he bought the vehicle off Carol, he was amazed to find it had only 7,900 miles on the odometer. The body and even interior were in great condition, and everything worked.
''It gets a lot of attention because it is so rare,'' Finlen said.
He debuted the vintage vehicle in the Austintown Memorial Day parade this year. Last week's Senior Center Cruise was its second outing.
Finlen said he plans to get special plates for it and wants to name it Raymond, after his late neighbor.