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Third time is a charm with '66 Corvair

How a 1966 Corvair yo-yo’d in and out of one man’s life

By Jim Moore

RW 1966 Corvair IMG-2489

In 1977, I was a 34-year-old car nut working as a sales executive for the NBC television station in Evansville, Ind. I had taken a client to lunch and noticed a nice-looking 1966 Chevrolet Corvair Monza coupe on the parking lot of the restaurant. I examined the car and found out it had 13,000 miles and was equipped with factory air conditioning! I waited about 20 minutes and a well-dressed, mature woman approached the car. I introduced myself and asked her if she was interested in selling it. After she said no, I gave her my business card and asked her to call me when she ready to sell it. In the summer of 1979 she called, ready to sell. I bought it for $1600.

In 1981, my wife and I divorced and she got the Corvair in the settlement. She left town and left the car in a rented garage. In 1989, the owner of the garage called and said that my ex-wife had never paid any of the rent and he now had the title and would sell it to me for $1000. Bingo! I got the lovely low-mileage Corvair back.

In 1991, I was remarried with two kids in college, so I sold the Corvair for $3000 to a very nice local lady with the stipulation that she offer it to me first when she was ready to sell it. Through the years I called her several times, but she was still thrilled to have it and was even an officer in the Evansville Corvair club. In 2016, I saw an obituary in the paper for the Corvair owner with her son listed as her survivor, so I assumed my Corvair would be leaving forever.

RW 1966 Corvair IMG-2488

Then in the fall of 2018, my wife and I and another couple drove 100 miles to Terre Haute, Ind., for an historic house tour. At the last house, a gentleman came up to me and said he thought he knew me. He turned out to be a friend of the deceased lady and had inherited the Corvair! And guess what — he wanted to sell it! Three days later, the long lost Monza was back in my garage after a 27-year absence, although it now has a “whopping” 30,000 miles on it. What are the odds?

I have just had it restored and am so happy to have it back in my stable. Judy, my wife, while not thrilled to have another old car sitting around, says that Corvair was meant to be mine.

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