Progress on the Camaro 

It's been a really rotten year (year and a half). Quite a few of my Brother and Sister Firefighters have fallen ill, several passing, including Captain William "Iron Bill" Dowling. Captain Dowling was severely injured at a fire on May 31, 2013. That fire claimed the lives of 4 Houston Firefighters (Captain Matthew Renaud, Engineer Robert Bebee - both from Engine Co. 51 and Firefighter Robert Garner and Probationary Firefighter Anne Sullivan - both from Engine Co. 68.) I retired from Engine 68, where I served for 15 years of my 31 year career. Captain Dowling had transferred there, just a few months before the fire. He had recently been promoted to the rank of Captain and was working with my old crew. On March 7, 2017, after 3 years and 8 months of continuous battles with pneumonia, amputation of both legs and severe brain injury, Dowling passed away, bringing the total Line of Duty Deaths at the Southwest Inn Fire to 5 members of the HFD. On top of that, 20 other firefighters were injured during the rescue efforts when a wall collapsed. At least 4 of those firefighters have been forced to retire due to the injuries they sustained.

Dowling's passing in March of 2017 was just one of several of my friends who have been taken as a result of the rigors of that profession. But, to top it all off, my father-in-law, James Tucker passed away on June 13, 2017; on his wife's birthday. James and Lavidia had recently celebrated their 57th anniversary. He was a good man and will be missed greatly.

James loved old cars and trucks. He had a 1994 Chevy extended cab truck that he bought new. I was a dealer custom package (ground effects kit, wheel/tire combo, custom interior, etc.) I restored the truck for him about 5 years ago; back to its original luster. It was a sad day when we had to sell it in 2016, just so he wouldn't drive. I guess we all reach the point; we just don't know the date or time so everyone can prepare.

James loved my old cars, particularly the '55 Chevy. He'd go to lunch with me once a month and sit with all my old, retired firefighter buddies. Every once in a while, he'd come to the shop and just check everything out. We'd talk cars for a few minutes then he'd leave me to my work. With his passing, I got back to work on the Camaro.

Here are a few pics of the things I've done. FITECH Fuel Injection, American Autowire Highway 22 harness and Vintage Air system, are currently being installed.

For those of you following and care to continue, stay tuned......I'm back at it.

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