Forget Gone in 60 Seconds; there’s nothing glamorous about car thieves or stealing cars. What could be possibly worse than returning to the spot where you left your classic musclecar, only to find it gone just a few minutes later? That’s the harsh reality three families now face who’ve visited the 2015 Woodward Dream Cruise over the weekend – including Papa John’s Founder/CEO, John Schnatter.
John Schnatter’s 1972 Camaro Z28
You may have heard about the pizza maker’s beloved ’72 Camaro Z28 from a story that went viral several years ago, where he was reunited with his first car after having to sell it to help his father’s struggling bar a few decades back. John not only paid a $25,000 finder fee for the car, but shelled out an additional $250,000 to the then current owner to reclaim ownership.
But that same car is in the news again, thanks to some ill-intended individuals who’ve used the family-friendly car event has a hot spot to locate and steal valuable collector vehicles. As the story unfolded, it was revealed that the car was actually secured inside a car trailer, and attached to a tow rig. The trailer was stolen with the car still inside, although it was later found a few blocks away abounded and empty. The Camaro is gold with black stripes and has license plate, “PIZZA1” attached.
***UPDATE: We’ve just received reports that John’s Camaro has been recovered. According to The Detroit News, it found on the 14400 block of Pierson, North of Interstate 96 on the city’s west side. The vehicle was abandoned between two boarded-up, derelict homes.***
Vietnam Vet’s 1966 Chevelle 300 Deluxe
Sitting on a trailer in the parking lot of The Kingsley Inn (formally the Radisson Hotel) in Bloomfield Hills, a black ’66 Chevelle 300 was stolen while still strapped to its trailer and hitched to the car owner’s matching 2007 Silverado. Stemming from North Carolina, the truck has its home state’s Purple Heart license plate with Vintage Vehicle plates on the Chevelle.
Little information is provided about the owner, other than that he’s a Vietnam vet with a purple heart, who has also worked in the commercial vehicle industry. If you have any information on the whereabouts of the truck, trailer or the Chevelle, please contact the authorities at the Bloomfield Hills, Michigan police department – 911.
Donna Zimmer has been frequenting the Woodward Dream Cruise since 1998, and every time she attended she brought along her 1966 Chevy Corvette convertible. Sporting red paint, a black top and a matching black interior, Donna has wanted one since she graduated high school that very year. “ITSMY66” was the Michigan plate attached to the car, and of course, would dearly love to have it back.
Reportedly having the car recently appraised for $90,000, Donna says it’s not even about the money – she just wants her car back. She recently told Channel 7 out of Detroit that she doesn’t want her husband to buy her a replacement either; just wants hers back, even though she has already accepted the fact that it’s probably out of state by this point. If you see any of these vehicles, please contact 911 or the Birmingham Police Department at (248) 644-3405.
Rick Seitz is the owner and founder of Timeless Muscle Magazine, and has a true love and passion for all vehicles. When he isn’t tuning, testing, or competing with the brand’s current crop of project vehicles, he’s busy tinkering and planning the next modifications for his own cars.