Family Fun
Teen tries to buy late father's squad car but loses auction – then highest bidder says “Here's your car”
Tanner successfully raised $3,465 to buy the cruiser, but still, it wasn't enough.
Luis Gaskell
08.28.20

People don’t live forever, and when the people we love pass away, it falls on you to remember them when they’re gone. As long as they’re alive in your memory and heart, they’re never really gone. So it’s natural that we tend to value things that used to be theirs a lot more.

Remembering them on your own is great and all, but having a physical representation of their memory helps a lot too.

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This teenager lost his father, a police officer, in 2010. Like most of us, he wanted to keep some of the belongings of his late father for memorial purposes. In this case, it was his dad’s car – a Dodge Charger LX.

Normally, it’s not too difficult to acquire your late loved ones’ belongings as memoriam. Usually, it’s their old clothes, photos, mugs or anything of the sort. It’s not so easy when it’s a muscle car that costs tens of thousands of dollars.

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This is what Tanner Brownlee found himself facing.

The Dodge Charger LX is not an affordable family car at all. It’s a 6.1 liter muscle car that costs at least 31,000 dollars brand new, and at least half of that when it goes second hand. And not everyone has 15,000-20,000 spare dollars just lying around.

But Tanner didn’t let that stop him. When the car went up for auction, he was lined up ready to bid for it. There was just one problem.

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The prices at auctions don’t stay put. While a car’s second-hand value might be nowhere near its price when it was brand new, an auction can quickly change that. The law of supply and demand reminds us that the higher the demand is, the higher the price must go too.

“I understand there will be a lot of high bidders, but, I am willing to do what it takes to get this car. It meant a lot to my dad and he cared so much for it. I think if anyone should be able to gain such an incredible honor to own such a special vehicle, it would be me or my little brother.”

And this Dodge Charger’s price tag went to 60 almost as fast as the actual car.

Although the 2nd hand value was roughly $12,000 dollars from $30,000 when it was brand new, that $12,000 soon went up and up until it was sitting at $60,000.

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Tanner set up a Gofundme before the auction to raise some cash and give himself a fighting chance, but the measly $3,465 he raised from a crowdfund wasn’t anywhere close to what he needed. For what it’s worth, Tanner did receive his dad’s old motorcycle jacket the day he passed.

However, Tanner went on record saying that the car was irreplaceable which is why he was so determined to join the auction anyway.

“I personally, being his son, would want someone I trust to have this car and take care of it. My father’s police car is something he was very much attached to and to someone else it may just be some car. But to me, it was my dad’s. I want to show my father that I’ve grown into a man.”

Eventually, he was outbid by tens of thousands of dollars. Though this isn’t the end of the story.

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The car went to bidder Steve Wells, a local rancher. It seems evident that Wells was pretty financially secure. Perhaps he keeps most of the livestock that the local town businesses need. It’s anybody’s guess.

But when the keys went to him, he approached Tanner without a second thought and surrendered them to him. He only said 5 words, “Tanner, here is your car.”

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Being able to drop $60,000 just out of the kindness of your heart is no small deal, and it’s wonderful to know that people this kind are still around.

The car was being auctioned off for charity for other police children like Tanner, so Wells pulled off a two-birds-with -one-stone act of kindness here.

Why not share Steve Wells power move of charity? It’s as simple as a few clicks of the button.

Watch the wonderful moment below.

Please SHARE this with your friends and family.

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By Luis Gaskell
hi@sbly.com
Luis Gaskell is a contributor at SBLY Media.
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