Top Down

This article appeared in the Summer 2008 issue of Texoma Living!.

When the newly restyled Chevrolet Bel Air arrived in showrooms it was an instant success. More than 1.5 million 1956 Bel Airs were produced, making it a remarkable success and one of the most recognizable American cars of all time. Denison’s Milton McAllister was 13 years old, but in his memory the Bel Air’s graceful front and rear wheel openings, full-width grille, and single housed taillight, stoplight, and backup light gave it just as good a look going, as coming. Priced at just under $2,500 (plus tt&l) only 41,000 convertibles were built making one a rare find today. A frame-off restoration of one of these classics will fetch $80,000 at auction. Of course, the real value is in owning and driving a car that brings your heart and spirit back to earlier days.

1956 Chevy Bel-Air Convertible

Owner: Milton McAllister, Denison
Dream Car at Age 16: Pontiac GTO Convertible
First Car Bought with Own Money: 1962 Ford Galaxy 500
Car You Would Like to Own: Classic Camaro Convertible SS
Number Cars You Have Owned: 10

This ‘68 Mustang is the exact same car given to Richard by his father when he was a freshman at SMU.

1968 Ford Mustang

Owner: Richard Schell, Sherman
Dream Car at Age 16: Shelby Mustang
First Car Owned: 1963 Olds Delta 88 hardtop
First Car Bought with Own Money: 1984 Chevy Camaro
Car You Would Like to Own: 2010 Ford Mustang
Number Cars You Have Owned: 7

1965 Corvette Stingray

Owner: Jim Leinart, Sherman
Dream Car at Age 16: 1955 Chevrolet 2-Dr hardtop
First Car Owned: 1955 Chevrolet 2-Dr hardtop
First Car Bought with Own Money: 1955 Chevrolet 2-Dr hardtop
Car You Would Like to Own: Fully restored frame-off 1955 Chevrolet 2-Dr hardtop (Has already invested 2 years restoring one.)
Number Cars You Have Owned: 20

Favorite Car Song: “See The USA in Your Chevrolet,” sung by Dinah Shore

1969 Chevorlet Camaro SS Convertible

Owner: Greg Wallace, Sherman
Dream Car at Age 16: 1969 Chevrolet Camaro
First Car Bought with Own Money: 1966 Chevrolet pickup
Number Cars You Have Owned: 10

Favorite Car Song: “Star,” by Deep Purple