Tri-City Members Jim and Diana Meyer

Jim has been a Tri-City Street Rod member since 1974. During that first year, Jim took a car caravan trip with club members to Canada and St. Paul, Minn. He rode with Alton Jackson in Alton’s 1932 Ford Coupe…same car that he drives now in 2009 after having it rebuilt dozens of times, (just an estimate).

Jim remembers the first car shows in Hastings, NE at the city auditorium.  At that time Ken Stein, another auto collector, was a young rebuilder. At one of the early car shows, Ken displayed a voltzwagon dunes-buggy with a chevy V-8 engine. Jim has always enjoyed creative odd-ball displays and that one has stayed in his memory.

Jim’s interest in gasoline propelled vehicles was developed early in his life when he was employed by his father to drive a brand new 1949 Dodge Cab-Over Truck into the alfalfa field while his father and older brother were picking up hay and loading it onto the truck. Jim was born in 1945, (you can do the math). Apparently there were no regulating child labor laws in Campbell, NE. Prior to Jim’s tenth birthday, he made a circle track in the alfalfa field with a 1937 Ford 85 horse two- door Slantback. Jim was allowed to drive a 1951 Plymouth Cambridge to school from the time he was in the third grade. Yes, he had passengers, and he was the taxi service. When Jim reached the ripe old age of ten, his brother Leon gave him a 1928 Chevy that he drove in the pastures up and down hills and through the creek until he was seventeen. Jim’s freshman year in high school was marked by a broken arm that he received cranking the 28’s engine. The crank kicked back and took his right arm with it. Jim still has this car, along with approximately thirty other cars and trucks that he has collected over the years including nine Barracudas. The car’s years range from 1928 to 1974. Jim still drives his 1968 Barracuda that he ordered and bought new in 1968, and a 1936 Plymouth Coupe that his great uncle bought new and Jim restored in 1983.

Diana joined the club eighteen years ago when she said, “I do” to Jim, and that included car events of many kinds. Together in our blended family we have four children, Trent, Jessi, Cody, and Dan. Trent is married to Karen, and we have a granddaughter, Briana, from that family. Cody is also married. His wife’s name is Amanda and their little boy is Galvin. They are expecting a little girl in May 2009. Jim, Diana, and the children when they were young, have worked at the Tri-City Car Shows and participated in club meetings and trips for all of these years. They have enjoyed many memorable times with the club and hope to keep going as long as the club endures.

And, as for that 1967 Barracuda Fast-Back in the basement…well, it was painted porsche red twenty years ago. All of the glass, carpet, seats, headliner, etc. are waiting to be assembled. Maybe Jim will finally have time to build that model when, and if, he retires.

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