Mom Tells Teen Son She Sold Fallen Marine Dad’s Car, But Actually Gets It Restored For Him
Apr 03, 2020 by apost team
Triston Walsh of Millstadt, Illinois was only four years old when his father, Marine Sgt. Nick Walsh, died at age 26 on deployment in Iraq. He left many things behind, including his beloved 1991 Ford Bronco. In an attempt to suprise Triston, his mother told the teenager that she sold the car, only to gift it to him after having it secretely restored last year.
Nick's wife, Julie, kept the car as her son grew. Triston didn't have much of his dad left, and he was eager to one day get his license so he could connect with one of the last tangible pieces of his late father, according to Marine Corps Times
Julie knew that the car wouldn't last forever. Sitting unused, it's parts were left to fall victim to rust and decay. Worried about the car's deteriorating condition, Julie took to Facebook to seek out advice. She wasn't sure whether she should sell it before it became useless or if there was some other alternative.
The response was unexpected and overwhelming. The story of Sgt. Walsh's car traveled across the internet, and soon, local dealerships and mechanics were offering to fix it free of charge.
Triston's 16th birthday was approaching, so Julie decided to take the opportunity to turn the restoration of her late husband's car into an unforgettable gift. Julie decided to tell Triston that she was going to sell the Bronco to buy him a car that actually worked.
Triston was devastated. He'd planned on driving his dad's car for as long as he could remember, and the thought of losing it was heartbreaking. He stopped talking to his mom altogether. The last piece of his dad, a piece he'd left specifically for his son, was soon to be gone. The thought left Triston unable to even think of speaking to his mother.
Julie didn't let the silent treatment ruin the surprise. She knew that Triston's heartache would only lead to greater joy when he finally received the greatest gift he could ever ask for. When she took Triston to the local dealership, more than 100 people showed up to cheer the teenager on and present the shiny red Ford Bronco, including a military color guard according to Marine Corps Times. "It just means so much to me," Triston told Marine Corps Times. "I'm just really happy that I'm able to have a piece of my dad left with me."
After the emotional surprise, Triston and his family continued to celebrate his birthday at the dealership with patriotic desserts and decorations, along with Nick's official military portrait.
“It was overwhelmingly sweet,” Julie’s cousin, Karrie Vanhosser, told Marine Corps Times. “The look on his face was priceless. It makes me sad that his dad wasn’t here to see it.”
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