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Vintage Vehicles Tell Their Story at Nitro Cruise-In

Aaron Diehl, owner of Diehl’s Restaurant in Nitro, poses with his 1966 Chevy II Pro Street No Prep Racer.

The Nitro Antique Car Club held its monthly cruise-in on Friday, June 7. A total of seventy-seven antique and classic cars were lined up along 2nd Avenue and 20th Street in Nitro for the event.

Each vehicle at the cruise-in has a unique story to tell. While accompanying his son on a car buying venture in Tennessee two years ago, Larry Rucker of Poca decided to purchase a 1941 Chevy Master Deluxe Business Coupe for himself. After he brought the vehicle back to West Virginia, he did some research into the coupe’s history. Rucker discovered that the car had been part of the personal collection of the late Grady Whitlock, owner of Grady Whitlock Ford of Beckley. After Whitlock’s death in 2011, his collection was sold off, and the coupe ended up in Tennessee.

Rucker says that he has had people come up to him at car shows, saying that they recognized the coupe from when it belonged to Grady Whitlock. The antique vehicle, which has 59,000 original miles and its original burgundy color, is considered a “survivor” because of its vintage condition.

The Nitro Antique Car Club hosts cruise-ins the first Friday of each month from 5 p.m. to dusk along 2nd Avenue. Upcoming cruise-ins will be held on July 5, August 2, September 7, and October 4.

Lary Rucker of Poca shows off his 1941 Chevy Master Deluxe Business Coupe.
Christi Byrd of St. Albans shows off her white 1968 VW Bug named “Casper.” Her husband, Mark, painted the outside and restored the inside of the car. The vehicle features an original sun roof, which makes it a rarity.
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