From slow van to show van


By Lance Mihm - [email protected]



ELIDA — John Meyer had his son’s best interest at mind when he made a classic car find.

His son, Ian, had taken an interest in the look of the Volkswagon buses of the 1970s. That was all Meyer had to hear when looking for Ian’s first vehicle.

“Ian had been in love with the buses,” Meyer said. “This one only had 60 horsepower in it. I figured he couldn’t get in too much trouble.”

Meyer found his 1973 Volkswagon bus in Bellefontaine in 2012. The van was for sale in Bellefontaine by a man who had joined the Air Force and needed to get rid of it. It was the first car Meyer’s son drove, and the teen used it for three years until he left for college. Now that Ian is gone, Meyer said he has taken it back over.

“When I bought it, it was completely taken apart,” Meyer said. “They had started to restore it, but never got too far. The engine was taken apart and sitting in a bushel basket.”

Meyer said it was like putting a puzzle back together, but through trial and error, he and Ian had the bus put back together in six months time.

Meyer said the bus came in handy while his son was a member of the Elida band.

“He hauled around bandmates and band equipment for quite a while in that van,” Meyer said. “It broke down quite a bit, so I left home on quite a few rescue missions.”

Meyer explained that his son had a habit of letting other people drive the van. Unfamiliar with the stick shift, they would often pop the gear shift out.

Now, Meyer said he takes the van for an occasional drive and uses it as a show car.

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By Lance Mihm

[email protected]

Reach Lance Mihm at 567-242-0409 or at [email protected]

Reach Lance Mihm at 567-242-0409 or at [email protected]

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