TRUCKS WE LOVE
Green means more than “Go” in this Nebraska family.
This Chevrolet Apache has been in my family since 1959 when my great-grandfather John bought it brand-new from Sheridan Chevrolet in Sutton, Nebraska. He used it as his farm truck, and he added extensions to it to haul his grain to the elevator during harvest. I grew up near Glenvil, Nebraska, and I have fond childhood memories of the Green Chevy, as we call it. I remember riding in it with my dad, Alan, to the local grain elevator to get milo and cracked corn for our chickens. We drove right into the elevator, and the grain would fall from the chute above us. I watched through the back glass as the grain filled barrels until it spilled over into the truck bed. On the way home, I might even get my knee tickled if I was sitting too close to the gearshift when Dad down-shifted. When I was a little older, I got to drive the truck in “creeper gear” through the hayfield as we picked up square bales and hauled them to our barn. Dad eventually sold the truck to his Aunt Helen and Uncle Bud. Nearly 15 years ago, my wife, Amanda, and I bought the Green Chevy during Aunt Helen and Uncle Bud’s farm sale. Uncle Bud had the truck repainted and restored the original seat. The rest of the truck, including the wooden floor in the bed, is completely original. A few years back, my sister-inlaw Jessica and her husband, Joe Logue, drove it off into the sunset after their wedding. And now my children, Joe, Brenna and Ethan, ride in it and enjoy sharing it with others at an occasional auto show. Every time I put my hands on the steering wheel, I think about the hands of each family member who has driven the Green Chevy over the years. My son Joe just turned 16, and he plans on cruising around in the truck this summer. Brenna, 13, and Ethan, 10, also love the funnysounding horn, the cab’s musty smell and the knee tickles from the gearshift. They are the fifth generation of our family to enjoy this great old Chevy Apache, and they certainly won’t be the last.
Generations of Fredricks have driven the Green Chevy. This summer, Joe (center below, with mom Amanda and sister Brenna in 2006) will take the wheel.