‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.
A Georgia woman probably isn’t so sure about that old saying, especially after her heart may wind up being broken twice – but not by a man, but by a Corvette.
Our story begins in 1972 when a teenage Terry Dietrich of DeKalb County, Ga., bought a 1972 blue Corvette Stingray.
She was instantly in love.
But six months later, the love of her life was ripped from her heart, stolen right out of the parking lot where she worked!
For years, she just figured it had been stripped of its parts and dumped in the Chattahoochee River and moved on, accepting an insurance claim from Allstate.
Fast forward 43 years to 2015, when a used car dealer in Forest City, N.C., named Gary Greene enters the story.
He had always seen a blue 1972 Corvette rolling through town since 1975, and since he likes to restore cars, when a local widow offered this one for sale, he jumped on it.
“I’ve known this car all my life. It’s never been hidden from anybody,” he told 11 Alive News in Atlanta.
Red flags soon went up, though, when he discovered the VIN and title were for a 1969 convertible, not a 1972 T-top.
Fortunately, he was able to find the real VIN on the car’s engine and frame, and soon DeKalb County police were able to track down the car’s real owner from a 1972 theft report. In fact, Dietrich’s family still has the same phone number and lives in the same house, so police were able to find her easily.
“If I could get that car back, it could roll back up the same driveway, pull back into the same carport it left 11-14-72. How awesome is that?” asked Dietrich.
Unfortunately, the “lovers reunited angle” of this story takes a sharp turn into a ditch right here.
North Carolina authorities have locked up the car saying they won’t give the car back to anyone without the original title. Nobody can find a copy, not even Allstate or the State of Georgia.
“What I fear is if maybe all the dots don’t connect, the car would go to auction and disappear and be gone. It would be a horrible end to the story,” said Greene.
Terry could get the car back with a court order, according to the North Carolina Department of Motor Vehicles, but since Allstate already paid the claim in 1972, Terry doesn’t technically own it.
It’s not clear how far Allstate will go to help Terry get her car back, even for a customer who has to this quote from Terry just break your heart? “If I cannot have the car back, I do not want to see it. And I will have to get over this all again,” she said.
Corvette community, let’s get involved and help this woman!
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