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Customer Feature - Thomas Williams

2013-03-18 - Thomas Williams

My story starts overseas. While stationed in England my parents ran into some car trouble and, being the people they are, began looking at vehicles wanting to find something useful, practical, efficient, safe and something that would be an investment. Enter a brand new white 1990 Volvo 240 DL wagon with a 5-speed, cruise control, all the little goodies and a rear flip up seat.

I always asked my dad why he didn't get the turbo, but that's another story. Since that time the wagon traveled back to the states and through about half the US, eventually making its final home in Texas. The car did everything from bring my younger brother home from the hospital after he was born to moving and hauling to road trips and college, and eventually it went from being my dad's daily driver and became my daily driver.

It forded creeks, went through ice and snow, and had been down plenty of dirt and mud roads. It saw it's share of work and fun; lots of work and lots of fun. And that 5-speed sure was fun. I taught my wife how to drive a manual in it and even planned to someday use it as my family car, after some necessary attention to the handling and oomph departments. The wagon would never quit mechanically. No matter what it was, it just kept running. I remember exactly where it rolled over 100,000 miles. A couple mufflers fell off along the way, and the heater core went out along with the trip counter and odometer (all of which were fixed), but it just kept on running strong. 

However, in the Spring of 2011, that 1990 240 wagon that had served my family so well would finally be retired but only after it did what it was designed to do best. I was going through an intersection when another car was speeding well beyond the posted limit and t-boned me. The wagon took the hit in the passenger side, crushing it. After spinning almost a full 360 degrees I gained my bearings and got out of the car with nothing more than a couple marks on my right hand. The old wagon made the sacrifice and finally stopped exactly when it counted.

Now, I miss that wagon a lot, but before the tears start flowing and we all get emotional, while my brother and I were in college my parents bought a 1991 240 sedan and guess what is now my daily driver. You guessed it. The sedan has its quirks and things that I'll address someday when the budget allows. It needs some help in the suspension and oomph departments, too. But, one of these days I will get another wagon and until then I will remember just how blessed I am.