Or more accurately the son of the original owner.
A week or so ago I was bored and decided to call a phone number on a Midas receipt I found in my '84 Allegro. It was the number of the owner at the time, but since it had sat so long I was pretty sure the number wasn't good anymore. But an answering machine picked up, with no custom message - just a robot voice saying to leave a message. I did. I didn't hear back from anyone until today when the son of the original owner returned the call..
Long story short, the story I was told by the tow yard guy that I bought it from was not 100% factual. He said he bought it from the original owner when the engine failed and they towed it in. Sort of true but not really.
The guy I spoke to today said his dad bought it new in '84. He loved it and drove all around the country in it. He had fond memories of traveling with his mom and dad in it. They visited the Tiffin factory in Red Bay Alabama twice (quite a trip from their Eastern Pennsylvania home). They visited NASCAR tracks all over the country. He got it from his dad (I didn't ask about his dad because it sounded like his parents had passed long ago). The engine blew in Allentown PA on the way to a race in Dover, Delaware back in 2008. His story deviates a bit from the tow yard guy in that it turns out his wife and the wife of the tow yard guy were friends. It sat somewhere for a couple of years before the tow yard guy towed it to the yard. He said it was pristine when he gave it to him.
When I got it, it was covered in years of neglect - mostly mildew - inside and out. I told him that and he couldn't believe it. Tow yard guy told him that he found a 454 engine for it in Philadelphia and had it running. Nope. I told him I put the engine in that thing and got it going again. I did tell him that the tow yard guy insisted that I not scrap it, I agreed and I honored my word. He said that was the promise he made the tow yard guy make.
We talked for about 20 minutes. Toward the end he asked how I got the engine out of it. He had decided that it would be too much work. I told him, to his dismay, that it came right out the driver's side door - with the heads on it. I think he would have kept it had he known it was that easy.
Anyhow, he's doing Indy at Pocono in August so I'm going to try to get there too. If not we're going to meet up in Dover, Delaware which, ironically, is where the rig was headed when the engine blew apart almost a decade ago now.