Fernridge resident David Turner, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020, found his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, at the back of an Aldergrove barn.(Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Fernridge resident David Turner, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020, found his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, at the back of an Aldergrove barn.(Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

A man of many, many cars

Langley’s David Turner has owned a ‘couple hundred’ vehicles, most of them just long enough to fix

Among the community of classic car owners in Langley, David Turner is known for owning a lot of cars, rarely for very long.

At 76, the Fernridge resident isn’t exactly sure how many have passed through his hands.

“I’ve probably had 30 good cars, cars that were fixed up nice for car shows,” he estimated.

“Over a lifetime, I’ve probably had a couple hundred.”

His very first car acquisition came about when he and his brother asked about a neglected 1946 Ford, and the owner said the two teens could have it for free, if they could push it off the property..

They did. As it turned out all the old car needed was a new fuel pump, and the brothers were able to sell it.

“It think we got $20,” Turner laughed.

His interest in cars started getting serious about the time Turner was 18, and he bought his first car for driving, a 1956 Ford that was a former California police cruiser.

After putting a lot of work into fixing it up, he didn’t get to drive it very long, because the car got hit by a drunk driver.

“It was a write-off,” Turner recalled.

“He [the other driver] had no insurance.”

READ ALSO: ‘Our hands are tied’: Langley Good Times Cruise-In announces cancellation due to COVID-19

After that, Turner went on to acquire many other vehicles, getting into the habit of buying them and working on them until someone else was willing to purchase them.

It was more of a hobby than a business, he explained.

“It was just for the fun of building them,” Turner told the Langley Advance Times.

“When I was finished, I’d get bored. As soon as I get them to the point where you can sell them, I sell them.”

A high point, he recalls, was selling his prized 1964 Comet, after 20 years of ownership, to Bill Gates’ neighbour in Seattle.

Now retired from his job with the Township water department, and a later job at a stove and stone store than lasted about 10 years, Turner still keeps an eye out for potential acquisitions.

“I’m always looking.”

Turner spotted his latest project while he was out for a drive and saw a neglected 1995 Firebird.

“I found it in the back of a barn out in Aldergrove. It was one of those ones you’ve got to have,” he related.

“I don’t think there’s more than 20 in B.C.”

It needed a lot of work.

“It was pretty rough.”

It took about 60 hours just to clean accumulated grime from the body, engine compartment and wheels, and get the T-roof locks working, among other things.

READ ALSO: VIDEO: Record turnout for third annual Langley car show against cancer

By the time he showed up for the annual Brogan’s Diner car show fundraiser against cancer, he said the car hadn’t been repainted yet.

The upholstery was in good shape, though, and he covered the driver’s side seat with a towel for protection.

Other than that, it was in good running order, perfectly able to handle the demands of a four-hour drive to Harrison and back.

Admittedly, it was a different choice for Turner, who usually ends up working on classic hot rods.

“I just wanted something different,” he explained.

“No matter what you do to a classic hot rod, it’s still not comfortable. These are a little bit more comfortable and fun to drive. And it’s collectible.”

He was able to make the round-trip in comfort with a working car heater while some hot rod owners ended up getting pretty cold, he related.

A 20-year-old grandson, aware of Turner’s tendency to lose interest in projects when completed, has been dropping hints about the Firebird.

Bad news for the grandchild; Turner isn’t planning on selling this one, although he concedes old habits might be hard to break.

“I hope not [to sell], this time,” is how he described his decision.



dan.ferguson@langleyadvancetimes.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

CommunityLangley

 

Fernridge resident David Turner at the wheel of his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Fernridge resident David Turner at the wheel of his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020. (Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Fernridge resident David Turner, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020, found his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, at the back of an Aldergrove barn.(Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Fernridge resident David Turner, seen here at the start of the Brogan’s Diner fundraising ride against cancer in Langley City on July 12, 2020, found his latest car, a 1995 Firebird, at the back of an Aldergrove barn.(Dan Ferguson/Langley Advance Times)

Just Posted

One of the tiny western toads during the 2019 migration. (Langley Advance Times files)
Environmentalists prep for annual Langley toad migration

South Langley will soon have tens of thousands of toads on the move

Blading for bees, led by Aldergrove resident Zach Choboter, headed through B.C. (Special to The Star)
Aldergrove’s bee blader crosses the prairies

Zach Choboter has rollerbladed from Whistler to Alberta in two weeks

Tourism Langley has put together Father’s Day gift boxes that support local businesses and aid the Langley Food Bank. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
This Father’s Day, you can support Langley businesses and aid the Food Bank

Tourism Langley brings back their popular gift boxes

Marsha Miller walked through the Derek Doubleday Arboretum Friday afternoon, reading the info stations about residential schools and their impact on Indigenous Canadians. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)
Langley vigil for residential school victims brings forth powerful emotions

Tears from visitors even before evening event, organizer said

Trinity Western University held a vigil Tuesday as well as having two more on Thursday, June 10 to honour the 215 children whose remains were buried at a residential school in Kamloops. Their remains were found with ground-penetrating radar. (TWU/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Langley university vigils honour the 215 children buried at Kamloops residential school

Indigenous leader offers suggestions on how to process the devastating information and on healing

t
How to tell if a call from ‘CRA’ is legitimate or a scam

Expert says it’s important to verify you really are dealing with the CRA before you give out any info

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of June 13 to 19

Flag Day, Garbage Man Day, International Panic Day all coming up this week

British Columbia-Yukon Community News Association’s 2021 Ma Murray Awards were handed out during a virtual ceremony on Friday, June 10. (Screen grab)
Black Press Media winners take gold at B.C. and Yukon journalism awards

Publications received nods in dozens of categories

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets campers while visiting McDougall, Ont. on Thursday, July 19, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
71% of B.C. men say they’d prefer to go camping with Trudeau: survey

Most British Columbians with plans to go camping outdoors say they’d prefer to go with Trudeau or Shania Twain

Members of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans’ Marine Mammal Response Program rescued an adult humpback what that was entangled in commercial fishing gear in the waters off of Entrance Island on Thursday, June 10. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Response Program)
Rescuers free humpback ‘anchored’ down by prawn traps off Vancouver Island

Department of Fisheries and Oceans responders spend hours untangling whale

Chilliwack cocaine trafficker Clayton Eheler seen with a tiger somewhere in Asia in 2014. Eheler was sentenced to nine years jail in 2018, but was released on bail in October 2020 pending his appeal of conviction.(Facebook)
Director of civil forfeiture seeks $140,000 from Fraser Valley drug dealer’s father-in-law

Clayton Eheler’s father-in-law Ray Morrissey caught with money in Fort St. John by B.C.’s gang unit

A Comox Valley shellfish operator pleaded guilty and was fined $10,000 in provincial court in Courtenay earlier this year. Record file photo
B.C. clam harvester fined $10,000 for Fisheries Act violations

Charges against three others were stayed in Courtenay Provincial Court

Frank Phillips receives a visit from his wife Rena at Nanaimo Seniors Village on their 61st wedding anniversary, March 31, 2020. Social visits have been allowed since COVID-19 vaccination has been offered in all care homes. (Nanaimo News Bulletin)
B.C. prepares mandatory vaccination for senior care homes

180 more cases of COVID-19 in B.C. Friday, one more death

Most Read