A video of a woman and dog being rescued from a Miata sinking in the Louisiana floods has gone viral. If you haven’t seen it, here it is.[brid video=”60083″ player=”4063″ title=”Raw Woman Dog Rescued From Sinking Car in La.”]
The story goes deeper. It turns out the woman was drunk, and the car was stolen. This explains why she didn’t simply open the top to swim to safety. (The fact that she left her dog in the sinking car irks me to no end as well. Fortunately the rescuers saved the dog, too.)
ClubRoadster.net member Ethan Castille lives in the area where this took place. Thanks to the power of social media, he soon made contact with the rightful owners, who lost everything in the floods. He felt for them, and as a Miata enthusiast himself he offered to restore the car for them. They agreed, and after being rescued from its watery grave the car is now in Ethan’s hands.
Since starting a thread about the car, Ethan has been overwhelmed with offers to help. Forum members are offering free advice, parts, and labor. His local Mazda dealer even donated a few basic replacement parts. He’s been detailing the progress of his not insignificant restoration in the thread, as well as a list of parts he has and still needs.
Some may argue that this is a foolhardy endeavor. Many newer, nicer cars were written off after Hurricane Sandy because once a car is underwater everything starts corroding. EVERYTHING. Ethan has a great deal of work ahead of him, more than most people would consider worth putting into a 1993 Miata. It would be much easier to take the insurance payoff and buy a comparable car that didn’t sit underwater for two days.
But that’s not the point. This is the only remaining part of the the family’s previous life before they lost everything else they own. The car is their only connection back to that life. I’ve known people who have lost everything they own. Any time they find something that had been lost, no matter how small, brings them a great deal of joy. That alone is worth it. On top of that, this is a Miata we’re talking about, a car that is also a joy to drive. Just ask Michael Thompson, who recently bought one of his own. Or ask me – I’ve owned three of them.
It’s also about a car enthusiast community coming together to take care of one of their own. The owners aren’t on ClubRoadster.net, but they’re Miata owners, and that’s good enough for them to pitch in and help however they can. This is something I’ve seen time and time again in the best of our communities – the willingness to help each other out. Ethan originally posted this as a simple build thread without asking for any help. But offers are coming in for pretty much every part he needs to replace. That, as Dominic Toretto would say, is family.
All photos from the post on ClubRoadster.net.