Great article, Jay. It makes me so happy to see how the ’67 Beetle connects and is loved by so many people around the world. -ES
I received a phone call–the Caller ID listed it as “Private Caller”
It rang once–then twice and I answered it. This was the pattern for robot calls.
I said: “Hello!” Nothing.
I usually give these calls two opportunities to respond, so, I again said: “Hello!”
A voice said: “Jay”
“Yes–who is this?” I replied.
“This is David Brown.”
I said–“David Brown from Pennsylvania?”
“Yes–I’m in Garland.” The bombshell.
“Are you kidding?”
“No–I’m here at Jackson and Market Place. How close am I to your place?”
It was, indeed, David and Melody Brown. They’d driven from Pennsylvania and were here.
But, let’s back up a bit. Readers of 1967beetle.com often see a reference to David Brown in my Articles. That’s because I have depended heavily upon David, a VWoA trained Parts Manager who worked for various VW Dealerships in the Pennsylvania area. Later, David opened his own VW repair shop and worked on VWs for 30 years.
David possesses VW Parts Catalogs which have furnished vital information for several Articles. Not only so, but David’s extensive knowledge of Volkswagens across the spectrum is awesome. He has supplied critical information relevant to 1967 Beetle operation and maintenance.
It came as a shock a couple of years ago when David told me that he and Melody would be leaving the Old Home Site, retiring from the VW repair business. What??? What was David going to do with his time. What would happen to his tons of vintage and NOS parts. And his VWs? And his tools and machinery? This became a hot topic between us.
As time passed, David told me that he’d like for me to have his Sun Distributor Testing Station. We talked and laughed about it. 1500 miles lies between us. But, we could dream. David called the machine “your machine” when we talked. And, we dreamed. And we laughed.
Now…here they were—in our neighborhood. I told David to stay put—that I’d be there in a jiffy. I jumped into our car. As I sped along, I made plans for their stay with us and what we’d do the next day and the next. I pulled into the parking area and we met. I’d never even seen anything more than a very distant, blurred photo of David. We shook hands—we embraced. This was a momentous occasion.
I hurried to the truck to meet Melody, David’s wife of 50 years. I asked her what sort of man she had married who would strike out from the Northeast and drive all the way to Texas on a whim.
I said to them both: “I am humbled that David would believe in me so fervently that he would drive all of those miles, to meet a stranger, and bring him his cherished machinery.” Tears filled my eyes and I could not talk.
David, Melody and Neva and I talked and talked. I called our daughter to come to visit. She and Neva and Melody continued their conversation in the comfort of the house while David and I unloaded his treasures from the truck.
Then, we talked some more—approaching midnight.
David announced that they were immediately returning to Pennsylvania—that night. And, they did—after we had said our good-byes and given hugs back and forth several times.
And so…it has become my turn to be the Conservator of Vintage Testing Equipment.
This won’t be the last we hear from David. Not at all! David will continue to contribute to 1967Beetle.com—passing his expertise to those of us who cherish our ’67 Beetles. He plans to continue selling vintage VW parts—so stay tuned to Mountain Bug on thesamba.com
My Test Lamp is raised to David and Melody Brown for the enduring part they have played in Volkswagen History—and for the years of service yet to come!