Auctioned Classic Car Raises Money for Combat Wounded Northland Veterans

LSC Students fixed up the 1976 Chevy, which sold for $14,750.

SUPERIOR, Wis.- At Benna Ford on Tower Avenue in Superior Wednesday, a 1976 Chevrolet Laguna S-3 was auctioned off as a fundraiser for combat wounded veterans in the Northland.

For $14,750 the vintage vehicle was sold with proceeds going to the Military Order of the Purple Heart Chapter 56, an organization of 48 Northland veterans wounded in combat.

“We’ve got older members that are World War II vets, Korean [War] vets, Iraq vets, and a lot of Vietnam vets,” said Commander Brad Bennett. “And it’s very difficult for us to sit out there and sell violas for a dollar all day. We can make more money doing this than we’ve made all year.”

For the past four years Benna Ford has been organizing the auction of donated classic cars. It all started after a local man donated a car belonging to his son, who had been killed after a tour in Iraq.

This year, it was fixed up by auto mechanic students at Lake Superior College, who did almost $15,000 of work in disassembly, repainting, rim cleanup, weatherstripping cleanup, and more.

“It was enjoyable, it was a good project for learning and you don’t get to see an old car that much anymore so it was just fun to work on something old and not just new stuff,” LSC student Blake Warren.

Him and his classmates were even more excited to learn their hard work was going to pay off, for the warriors who worked even harder in combat.

“It kind of drove me to work harder on this even so it’s just nice to know that it’s going to go to something special,” he said.

With four cars auctioned off in the past four years, the Military Order of the Purple Heart has raised nearly $30,000 for a memorial at the new Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery. The granite cost $11,000 Bennett said, and they also want to add some benches and planters.

A fifth car could soon go up for auction as well, an old Jeep Willys. And the mechanic students at LSC are excited to convert it into a military style Jeep.

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