Sierra Vista Mall hosted the 4th Annual Fallen Heroes Car Show on Saturday, Oct 5.
There was a myriad of pristine vintage and contemporary cars to be seen and enjoyed, their owners more than happy to talk about their coveted autos.
Louie Rodriguez Sr. and Jr. brought out a beautiful brandywine colored 1957 Chevy which Louie Sr. bought brand new off-the-lot for $1,500. He gave the car to his son when he was in high school. The vehicle has been a labor of love and dedication since then.
One day Louie Jr.’s friends asked him for a ride home after school. When they got to the parking lot they found the Chevy missing. It was later found stripped, the windows smashed, in a field completely destroyed. He was heartbroken. They took it home and spent the next several decades rebuilding it, putting in a 383 Stroker engine, 700R transmission and 2 ½” custom exhaust system with the assistance of Custom Concepts of Fresno. The upholstery was completely redone by Wells Upholstery.
In contrast to the shiny Chevy, Gary Lieb and his son Danny brought out their tan and imitation wood paneled, sticker covered 1978 Pacer D/L to the car show, a vehicle rarely seen around Clovis today.
They like to take the Pacer on trips with the Lemon Rally, a club that celebrates “interesting cars or crap cars, if you prefer,” Lieb says.
About the Lemon Rally, he says, “They race them. They have a concourse of the lemons where they show them off. The closest one is in Monterey during car week to make fun of the people with Mazeratis and Ferraris.”
Lieb has had his Pacer for about four years now. It belonged to the father of a girl he dated in college.
“It got so old and they wanted somebody that would do something with it and, of course, they went, ‘oh, well, that would have to be Gary. That makes total sense,’” he said. “So I bought it from him.”
Lieb took it and cleaned it up, making it run a little better. He says it’s a “preservation, not a restore” like many of the other classics being shown.
Thousands of car enthusiasts turned out for the event which raised money with 100% of funds benefitting Fresno and Clovis Police Chaplaincy, Fresno Deputy Sheriff’s Association, Peace Officer Memorial Fund, Clovis Firefighters and American Legion District 14.