Classic Car Sells 3 Times to Benefit Children of Parents Killed in Canada Motorcycle Crash
The 1973 Pontiac Parisienne was supposed to have been sold at auction.
The vintage 1973 Pontiac Parisienne is dark red, with mag wheels and chrome bumpers and was lovingly restored by Brent Keryluke, whose two young children played in the backseat while he worked.
That classic car was to be the inheritance of Liam, 3, and Arielle, 6, a highway treasure for them to enjoy in adulthood.
But parents Brent and Nicole died in an accident when their motorcycle collided with with a truck near Innisfail, Canada, in May and the Parisienne went under an auction gavel over the weekend to raise money for the children's future.
Then, in an extraordinary outpouring of compassion and kindness, three separate people bought the car, with the last purchaser giving the muscle car back to Liam and Arielle.
"The car was sold for $29,000 and then was donated back. Then it was sold for $30,000 and donated back. Then it went for $20,000 and was donated back again," an overwhelmed Ben Keryluke, the children's grandfather, told Global News.
"They let everyone know what was happening, where the money was going to go, and then we were shocked [by] what happened after that," he said.
The auction's generosity is only part of the outpouring of support directed at the Kerylukes. A GoFundMe account has raised more than $80,000.
Liam and Arielle are being cared for by their grandparents and other family members. Both have hearing impairments, and medical costs for treating those issues are expected to increase in the future.
The children are fairing well, their grandpa said, and greet each day with joy. "They get up in the morning and both of them are smiling and laughing," he said.
They stood on the stage with their grandparents during the auction, and watched and listened as the crowd cheered and clapped as their father's vintage car was sold again and again, and eventually returned to them.
“People were overwhelmed with just the generosity of people of central Alberta and the support that this family has,” explained Lyndsay Payne, co-owner of the auction house.
“It was incredible. People were cheering, I was crying. Our auctioneer Rod had a hard time getting through it because he was crying. He was emotional."
When the last buyer stepped forward and said "I want your family to have that car, so I'm giving it back to you," the audience erupted, she said.
"When our auctioneer Rod announced that, the place just went wild. There was a standing ovation, people were cheering, whistling. It was wonderful."
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