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Archive for Monday, July 29, 2013

25 years ago: Stolen car recovered just in time for Demo Derby

July 29, 2013

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From the Lawrence Daily Journal-World for July 29, 1988:

  • A car being prepped for its big evening at the August 5 Demolition Derby had been recovered after having been stolen from its owner, a local mechanic. The white 1972 Chevrolet Impala had vanished earlier this week from Ellena Honda on Four Wheel Drive, where Mike Patterson had been readying it for the Derby, an annual event at the Douglas County Free Fair. Douglas County Sheriff's officers had called Patterson to report that the car had been found "sitting out by Lone Star. They said apparently some kids took it." The car had had quite the night out before its discovery, according to the sheriff's office, as it had reportedly "taken out a piece of a bridge, a dozen mail boxes, three or four orange barrels and three or four yards." In spite of its wild ride, the car had only a few new scratches on it, although in its preexisting Derby-style condition (bashed-in passenger side, no windows, hole cut in the roof, and no exhaust system) it might have been difficult to distinguish new marks from old.
  • Speaking of the upcoming fair, the newly remodeled concession stand had been finished just in time for Fair Week and was to be opened at a ribbon-cutting ceremony this week. Douglas County and Lawrence officials were planning to attend the event, which was also intended to honor retired county maintenance director Fremont Hornberger and others who had worked with 4-H children in past year.
  • The local Bendix/King Radio plant, which had a contract with the federal government, was supplying radios and batteries to the National Forestry Service and the Bureau of Land Management. The firm had shipped 3,000 to 4,000 batteries this month to firefighters in western states this month and had also sent about 300 radios in the past week to the same area. Firefighters out west were currently battling forest fires at Yellowstone National Park as well as in South Dakota, Idaho, and Alaska.

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