~ Hello Willys enthusiast friends, I wanted to share the story behind our 1955 Willys Wagon both current and past, using something my 14 year old daughter wrote.
Around 50 years ago, my father, with my grandfather traveled on vacation to the mountains of the Valles del Tuy, from a small town called Tacata, in Miranda State, Venezuela. This was a fun place to travel, yet intense for a child only 5 years old. Almost always this was the strongest rainy season and always the road was very bumpy with mud and rivers with increased levels. The family used to go on these trips with an old Willys Wagon 4×4 1955 and two other vehicles also 4×4 something more recent but not so good for playing in the mud. He spent much of that time in the back of the Willys with his older sister and those were good and fond memories.
A few years ago, my father began searching for a vehicle for the mountains and came up with this Willys Wagon which immediately attracted his attention. It coincided much with that old Willys, from approximately 50 years before that he enjoyed so much and so he did not hesitate to buy it. In my country the old Willys Wagons are rare to see as almost all ended completely disarmed and forgotten. This Willys Wagon had several issues that needed to be restored. Nothing serious, basically some oil leaks, some details of the engine, no rear brakes and the fronts were not good. It was lacking the internal and external emblems and door handles, electrical system, carburetor had no calibration, faulty ignition system, intonation and setup time, maintenance and repair of the cooling system, steering system maintenance, interior panels and some body work details. For almost three years the family worked on it at home, devoted to gradually restoring some of the things I mentioned with information on the Web, some old Willys mechanics, and the support of Kaiser Willys who had the spare parts and accessories to make the restoration get as close to the original. It was something easy to enjoy for the whole family.
Now we have a great utility vehicle that we all enjoy to take us places that we love, go fishing, to the mountains and some events where again we always hear the same thing my dad always said, “When I was little and enjoyed a long trip in a Willys like this”, “it’s great that so many years have passed and this is so gleaming and functional”. Today my little sister and I can feel the emotion that until recently did not understand. I am proud to introduce the Willys on behalf of my family and especially my father, she is the “Happy Cachicama” as we affectionately call.
Note: Cachicama, is the feminine gender of an animal here from Venezuela, also called Armadillo, known for its ability to dig deep into the ground and create a series of tunnels and burrows, but basically the body is covered with a flexible hard armor, and is fairly agile and strong, with curved lines like the roof of the Willys Wagon.
Kaiser Willys Jeep Blog Story – Giover Mirabel
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