The gleaming, pearl-white 1963 Volkswagen looked as though it could enter a parade of classic show cars and lead the pack, but not so long ago, it was destined for the junk heap.
With the help and donations of several Lodi businesses, the little bug found new life and a new purpose, having helped to raise nearly $4,000 to support the Adopt-A-Child foundations yearly childrens shopping spree.
Chances to win the refurbished auto were offered at $10 apiece at a raffle held Sept 9 at the Lodi WalMart.
Stockton resident Douglas Cloud bought tickets and as he dropped his into the box he told the student holding it Thats the winner, right there.
True to his prediction, Cloud and his wife, Janice, were informed by program director Dennis Lewis that they had indeed won the car, complete with brand-new stylish paint job, rebuilt engine, fresh upholstery and polished trim.
Cloud said the car was really for his daughter, 10-year-old Jody, but that he and his wife would take care of it for her until she was old enough to drive.
The car itself was donated by Bert Logsdon and Randy and Rhonda McCullough, and blasted down to bare metal courtesy of Dick Sanborn.
Many other Lodi business people contributed their skills and materials, including Mike Pyle, Steve Alder and Dennis Cunnington, among others.
Lewis, a Lodi police officer, said the shopping spree allowed 100 less-fortunate local children to buy school supplies and clothes, and depends on the donations of businesses and individuals like these.
This year, the organization, which he founded, raised $10,000 between the raffle and the Hot Rod and Harley show presented earlier.
Lewis hopes to continue with the program each year.
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