Bill Frye's '65 Impala two-door hardtop didn't end up a mean-spirited car, nor did it start out life as one. "I got the Impala from my father-in-law in 1990 after he sold a cherry Ford Galaxie convertible for $1,900 without telling me," Bill says. "He said he would have given it to me if he'd known I wanted it."
Bill's father-in-law did make amends by offering to go into "partnership" on an Impala he had sitting in a vacant lot. Bill agreed and once the car was deemed roadworthy, he made the trek up to Michigan to move his in-laws to Colorado. The Impala made it the entire journey problem free. In those days, loyalty and innocence seemed to be the Impala's main traits. Little did Bill and his family realize the terror that would come upon them.
Well, actually you might not call it "terror," per se, but it could've been a scene out of Stephen King's novel Christine. The Impala became the Frye family's second car for a short time after its mission from Michigan. One day, Bill's mother, visiting from California, asked to borrow the car. As she backed it down the driveway, Bill's son, Adam, at the time a jubilant, carefree 4-year-old, spied his Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle in the Impala's path. "Save me," cried the helpless hard-backed little action figure. The young Frye dove under the rolling carcass of steel and rubber reaching for the cloaked reptilian assassin. Presently, the Impala is equipped with Baer brakes, 14-inch rotors, and four-piston calipers, but at the time it was running stock units. A lot happened in the driveway that day, but let's put it this way: The brakes didn't work quickly enough.
Fortunately, the small Frye survived this mishap and is today a rabid Chevy enthusiast. He even has his own Impala SS.
Soon after acquiring the Impala from Michigan Bill and his father-in-law's "partnership" quickly turned into a sole proprietorship. "When we got here I immediately started looking for replacement fenders and other miscellaneous parts and I think I made him nervous about what it might cost to do what I wanted to the car," Bill says. "I'm pretty sure he felt his cheapest way out of the partnership was to just give me the car. That way all the restoration expenses would be mine. Which was a good call on his part."
Once Bill got controlling interest of the project, the first thing he did was replace the front fender, remove the interior, and sand blast the body. Six C4 Corvette taillights brighten up the rear and the door handles were shaved, too. While Bill is a financial advisor by day, at night and on weekends he ditches the suit and turns into a superhero, hands-on type of guy. He also applied a fresh paint job and replaced the car's 283 with a rebuilt 350 while he was at it.