Saturday, August 16, 2008


Please tell me this didn't happen!
I'm in shock! Today just isn't my day, even with the sun shining, moderate temperature and low humidity! The weather is just perfect for a top-down drive through Three Oaks to fill the tank and run the car past the dealer to to get their advice on the air conditioning.

Mario wants to show the car at the AACA meet next month in San Diego and wants the A/C to be in top-notch condition for the drive through the desert states! We also anticipate participating in the LCC-MDR car show in Saugatuck, leaving the LCC-LMR fall driving tour to Starved Rock, IL in mid-October to finish off the car show season.

I'm about a quarter-mile from the Ford dealer cruising at a respectable 20 mph or so when a red blur suddenly appears from my left. About one second before impact I was able to get my hand on the horn and foot firmly on the brake when the most sickening crunch and simultaneous jolt rocked my inner core!


The car came to a halt and the red blur is continuing beyond the intersection, never applying his brakes! I sat there for a second making sure I was not injured and then looked off to my right, seeing the red blur is actually a Pontiac Transport mini-van. The driver finally came to a stop a good half-block from the intersection, his rear tire already flattened. I turned the wheel, pulled out of the intersection and came to a stop.

I sat motionless behind the wheel for about thirty seconds, not wanting to see what he did to my Clenet. When I felt that I could stomach the carnage, I opened the door and got out of the car. At first glance, the cracked fender apron, twisted driving light, mangled bumpers and sheared horn look somewhat superficial...however the bent frame behind the bumpers and under the apron seems to be more serious.
Several residents near the intersection began to emerge from their homes to check on our well-being after hearing the thunderous crash. I kept pacing about the scene holding my head, not wanting to believe this just happened. I'm so grateful so many people came to ensure we were not injured and also called the accident into the Three Oaks Police Department.

A Three Oaks Police Officer arrived and took statements from both of us. I'm glad the other driver immediately took responsibility for the collision and most importantly that neither of us were injured. I just cannot figure out how he could miss that stop sign? My neighbors from town were approaching the scene and stopped upon seeing me, the Clenet and a Police Officer. I'm so grateful they were able to run back to Ken's house to retrieve my phone and camera to document the collision. Deb and Bruce, thank you so much for helping me!

With almost an hour passing by, the Police Officer completed his paperwork and issued a citation to the other driver. I finished taking many pictures of both vehicles, the scene and of course...the unobstructed stop sign the other drive failed to heed. The car does not feel correct as I drive away, and once again I'll be without my Clenet for many weeks! How could this happen?

At least the Waterford crystal ashtray survived! I'm doing my best to stay sane and keep a positive attitude - after all - aren't situations like this why we purchase insurance?

Ron Zarantenello

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