Its the typical story. Always wanted a Corvette. Had one, but then came the wedding, and mortgages and babies and college tuition bills. First things first. But then, inevitably, the last kid graduates. The wife agrees. The dream is fulfilled.
In a nutshell, thats Larry Reeds story. This soft-spoken insurance man from West Virginia finally recaptured his dream in this 62.
This is the first Corvette Larrys been able to hang onto. Hed owned a 61 briefly, but he got married in 1962 and, as he puts it, The wedding bells were louder than that Corvette could roar. Larry realized he couldnt grow a business and a family, and at the same time properly care for his Corvette. He made the supreme sacrifice.
His wife, Karen, knows how long that dream was on the back burner and has encouraged the love affair as its developed since Larry bought the car in July 1993. That was just two weeks after his youngest offspring graduated from college. At first, he thought of the car as a driver, but before hed put much mileage on it, he got bitten by the NCRS bug and began collecting awards.
Larrys pride and joy has evolved into the sort of Corvette that evokes an involuntary double take as you passeven when its sitting in a sea of Corvettes. Thats where it was when we happened upon it at the NCRS Winter Meet in Florida this past January. A very impressive collection of perfect Corvettes was assembled at this event. Its no exaggeration to say that strolling through the judging area was like a mosey through Tiffanys. One jewel after another.
Still, this one leapt out, testimony to its exceptional nature. What was it? The perfect Roman Red paint? The painstaking restoration that made it look like it just rolled off the line? The fact that it did some time as a driver? Its all those things, but something more. This little honey has attitude.
While in some ways its just like any other pristine 62, it actually radiates personality. You can see the tender loving care that Larrys put into it. As grand as this car is, though, its equally impressive that Larry and some of his Corvette friends, as he calls them, did all the work to bring her to the shape shes in. And remember, Larry doesnt own a resto shop. Hes into insurance.
Hes spent the last seven years perfecting this car. This July, hell go for a Duntov Award in Bowling Green. What next? Back to the beginning. He wants a driver. Maybe a 63 split-window, he says. Yeah. One with a lot of attitude.