A Tale of Two Trucks

‘Mac’ and ‘Lit­tle Red’ played an im­por­tant part in this cou­ple’s life’s work

More of Our Canada - - Wheels - by Joan Mcgillivray, Neep­awa, Man.

Apop­u­lar song in the ’90s was “Mer­cury Blues,” which in­cluded a line that read, “crazy ’bout a Mer­cury.” Well, our Mer­cury was not for “cruisin’ down the road!” My hus­band Roy bought our 1950 one-ton Mer­cury truck for use on the farm. “Mac” was green with black fend­ers and was used to haul grain, cat­tle, pigs, even horses. It also be­came our “court­ing” truck, as it was the only ve­hi­cle avail­able.

When we left the farm in 1960, the Mer­cury was sold but not for­got­ten. As our 50th wed­ding an­niver­sary ap­proached decades later, Roy wanted to find the Merc. It was dis­cov­ered aban­doned in the tall grass be­hind a shed in a lit­tle vil­lage just ten miles from home. There was no doubt it was our Merc—it still had the fender dent I had put there years be­fore—a dent that had made me very un­pop­u­lar at the time. Over the course of two years, we bought and re­stored our old court­ing truck for our 50th wed­ding an­niver­sary in 2001.

The Mer­cury sat on our drive­way af­ter that for sev­eral years un­til my cousin, visit­ing from Aus­tralia, asked if it was for sale. Sev­eral months later, the price was agreed upon, all the nec­es­sary pa­per work and per­mits were ob­tained and the Mer­cury was bound for Aus­tralia. Af­ter a long car­rier ride across the Prairies from Neep­awa through the moun­tains to Van­cou­ver and fol­lowed by an ocean voy­age, “Mac” is now hap­pily re­tired in Aus­tralia.

Then there was “Lit­tle Red,” a 1965 Ford Econo­line, pur­chased in 1966 for the pur­pose of us­ing it in the auc­tion busi­ness, as Roy was an auc­tion­eer. Roy fash­ioned a ply­wood desk to fit over the steer­ing wheel so the cashier could sit in com­fort while tak­ing money dur­ing a sale. Later, when we opened our fur­ni­ture store in Neep­awa, “Lit­tle Red” was used as a de­liv­ery truck un­til it, too, was re­tired in 2002.

“Lit­tle Red” sat on the drive­way, oc­ca­sion­ally used in haul­ing leaves or gar­den cleanup in spring and fall. When Roy was no longer able to drive it, we looked for a buyer who would ap­pre­ci­ate its unique qual­i­ties and give it a good home. In Septem­ber, 2016, af­ter be­ing in the fam­ily for 50 years, “Lit­tle Red” has in­deed found a new owner who plans to give it a new lease on life and dis­play it in a show room right here in Man­i­toba.

Roy and I cel­e­brated our 65th wed­ding an­niver­sary Au­gust 11, 2016. Both “Mac” and “Lit­tle Red” may just have been ve­hi­cles, but they sure played an im­por­tant role in our life’s work. n

Top right: “Mac” the Mer­cury. Above: Roy and “Lit­tle Red” ready for the pa­rade in nearby Lang­ford, Man.

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