Cops & Rodders a success

Becky Vargo • Sep 17, 2018 at 9:00 AM

The first Cops & Rodders Car Show had organizer Jake MacKeller smiling as he walked the parking lot at Grand Haven High School late Saturday morning.

The high school’s community policing officer checked numbers as more classic vehicles continued to arrive at the show set up to benefit Shields of Hope.

“To be honest, I was hoping for 30-40 cars,” he said, looking over the filled parking lot.

As of noon, more than 80 classic vehicles, including a couple of old ambulances took up most of the space in the lot.

Participants checked out Mustangs, Shelbys and GTOs, as well as Camaros and a variety of cars, including a 1949 Crousley.

Fruitport resident and former Muskegon paramedic Dave Henry showed off his 1974, station wagon-style ambulance.

“It was hand built as an ambulance by Sayers & Scoville,” Henry said. “It’s on a Cadillac chassis.”

This is one of five left of the 25 ambulances built in 1974 by his manufacturer, Henry said. Their last year was 1978. By then, the big box style ambulances were becoming popular.

The classic ambulance is Henry’s retirement hobby.

“I do 6-7 car shows a year and a lot of fire department open houses,” he said.

MacKeller, who was showing a 1948 Plymouth owned by his late father-in-law, Dale Lewis, said that he’s “huge into hot rods.”

“The county is always looking for a way to reach out to different groups of people,” MacKeller said. 

He noted that a car show was a way to have positive interactions with car club groups.

Those car clubs like a show with a cause. That’s why he reached out to Shields of Hope, an organization of law enforcement personnel, who reach out to families affected by cancer. 

For more information on Shields of Hope, go to http://shieldsofhopewestmi.com/.

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