The amazing story of Rachel Veitch and “La Chariot,” her favorite 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente.
Rachel Veitch’s fun facts:
- The car has had eight mufflers, at least 17 batteries, three sets of shocks, and a lot of oil changes. It has been around longer than her three marriages.
- She had to put on the brakes after 18 batteries, 8 mufflers, 3 husbands… because of problems related to age.
- When she bought her car, gas cost 39 cents a gallon, Lyndon B. Johnson was president, and “The Little Old Lady from Pasadena” was the most popular song on the radio.
That’s right: 567,000 miles. Driving 567,000 miles in the same 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente, which is more than a trip to the moon and back.
Rachel Veitch, a retired nurse and mother of four, paid $3,289 to a dealer in Sanford, Florida, in February 1964 to buy “Chariot.” Veitch said, ” My last husband and I got a divorce in 1975. He took the 1972 Pontiac we had together, and I kept Chariot. I bet he’s changed cars at least six times by now, but I still have my trusty Chariot. “My Chariot has never lied to me or cheated on me, so I know I can always count on her.” Rachel said “she” or “her” when she talked about Chariot.
Veitch said that her mercury comet classic car, which has an automatic transmission, cold air conditioning, and a “lousy” 15 miles per gallon, has been in car shows all over the country and took her to her 70th high school reunion in Pennsylvania in 2007. She said that her classmates and neighbors are tired of hearing the same old story.
After Veitch got a ticket for going 92 mph in a 55 mph zone in 2002, her dream car was fixed up. According to the Rachel Veitch, car has been in her care for almost half a century because she cares about it so much. Veitch said, “People don’t want to talk to me any more.” “They don’t want to hear about my chariot anymore.”
“When I buy gas, I write down the date, how many miles per gallon I got, and how many miles I drove,” she said. I’ve never been a bad person, and I’ve taken care of everything except my
She was involved in a number of groups, including the National Association of Antique Car Club with her 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente, which was called “La Chariot.”
The last time she drove was on March 9, 2012. She could no longer drive after March 9, because she had gone legally blind. The next day, her worst fears were confirmed when she couldn’t read the big headlines in the newspaper. This was because her eyes had been getting worse for years, since she was a car fanatic who was almost obsessed with cars. She said, “I know I’m not safe enough to drive.” “But I have taken it in stride.”
In July 2012, Veitch’s old car went for the Wisconsin to be in an antique car show, but after that, she had a plan to sell her 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente.
The Tonight Show with Jay Leno
Mrs. Veitch wanted to sell the car instead of giving it to her family because she worries they won’t take care of it. In August 2010, when Veitch was on “The Tonight Show,” she said she might sell it to host Jay Leno, who likes classic cars, if he’s interested.
Veitch said early Thursday morning, “I haven’t talked to Jay Leno yet, but I’m wondering if he’s interested.” But I don’t think now is a good time to talk about it.
When asked if any of her four children, nine grandchildren, or eleven great-grandchildren were interested in the car, Veitch said: “Even if they did, they’re not going to understand. They couldn’t deal with it the way I did. ” Mrs. Veitch said that one of the main reasons her car had lasted so long was that she took good care of it.
The car is said to be worth about $12,000 (£7,500) in 2012. It has had three sets of shock absorbers and eight exhaust mufflers. The only time the car was in an accident was in 1980, when Veitch was driving on I-95 in Georgia and was hit from behind. Luckily she was not injured from that incident.
Anyway, in the year 2016, Rachel Veitch’s 1964 Mercury Comet Caliente handed over to the Wisconsin Auto Museum.
The former nurse, has said that she is doing well without her chariot. She said, “I know I’m not safe enough to drive, but I’m not upset about it.” “A lot of people have it worse than I do.” “I’m not sick with cancer or Lou Gehrig’s disease. I am lucky. ” She was not sad about the end of her time with “Chariot” because she has already traveled nearly 600,000 miles with it.
After ending her journeys with loving1964 Mercury Comet Caliente, Rachel Veitch ended her life journey in Orlando, Florida, on May 11, 2017, when she was 98 years old.
Wisconsin Auto Museum added a post on their facebook page to honor her 100th birthday
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Irv Gordon got his 1966 Volvo P1800 into the Guinness Book of World Records in 1998 after driving it 1.69 million miles. It is said that he has driven the same car for close to three million miles at this point.