WyoTech’s Laramie Campus Rebuilds Fallen Soldier’s ‘59 Chevrolet Apache
Posted Tuesday, Mar 8, 2011 by
American service men and women sacrifice a great deal. And there comes a time when a soldier gives the ultimate sacrifice — his or her life. Wyoming resident Captain Bruce Hays did just that for his country. A veteran of Desert Storm, Hays was stationed with the Wyoming National Guard when he got redeployed.
Several years ago, Hays decided to give his wife a ’59 Chevy Apache pickup as an anniversary present. He knew the truck would need a lot of work and attention, and he imagined spending hours with his wife restoring the classic back to its original splendor. Before he and his wife could begin restoration, Hays learned he was to be deployed to a remote region in the Afghanistan mountains. He paid a local mechanic $17,000 to do the repair work he and his wife had originally planned.
In Afghanistan, his mission’s objective lay along a remote road, one in which the enemy knew he was coming. That day, Hays was killed in the line of duty. After learning of Hays’ death, the mechanic disappeared with the money without making a single repair on the ’59 Chevy. Hays’ friends decided to finish his mission and complete restoration of the truck.
WyoTech partnered with a fundraising team on behalf of Captain Bruce Hays and his family to get the vehicle restored to the point of painting. WyoTech’s Automotive Technology program members have already successfully completed the mechanic work on the Chevy truck. It took the combined efforts of students, instructors and coordinators at the WyoTech Laramie campus to get things moving.
WyoTech would like to thank everyone involved in working to complete the final mission of Captain Bruce Hays — a soldier, a loving father and a dedicated husband.
For more on the story, go here.
The Collision/Refinishing Technology program at WyoTech in Laramie prepares students who enjoy metalworking, painting, detailing and the pure satisfaction of restoring collision-damaged vehicles to compete for entry-level positions in the collision/refinishing career field.