Newberry Observer

A car full of memories

NEWBERRY — Those who know the Reid Family know they are a car family, in fact Zebulon “Zeb” Reid created the Midlands SC Muscle & Classic Cars group.

Those who know them may also know of the 1955 Chevrolet Nomad.

The Nomad was originally owned by Mike Reid, Zeb Reid’s father, and is filled with special memories.

The story of the Nomad goes back to before Zeb Reid was born, when Mike Reid was a youth in Brevard, N.C. He first spotted the vehicle when his father would take him to buy doughnuts at a local bakery. Across the street was an Amoco Station, and the owner of the station bought the car when it was new in the 1950’s.

Mike Reid still remembers watching the original owner washing and waxing the car. When he became a teenager, he still admired the car, only now from Joe’s Pool Hall, rather than the bakery. However, Reid lost track of the Nomad when the owner passed away.

Then one day, when he was in Hendersonville, N.C. in the mid 1980’s, he was having his company vehicle washed, and noticed a garage door open at a home across the street. The very same Nomad was sitting inside, with a for sale sign on it. The grandson of the Amoco Station owner inherited the car and wanted to sell it, and Reid purchased it.

“This car represents a form of nostalgia for me to a time where I was a young boy and my dad would come home after working five to six consecutive days for Southern Railroad/later Norfolk Southern Railroad. Dad would take me fishing at Burnt Pine Plantation, a hunting and fishing club in Newborn, Georgia, and we would take the Nomad fishing. I drove this car a lot in high school as a student at Loganville High School,” said Zeb Reid. “This was the vehicle my dad and I spent a lot of time in going fishing and driving to my grandparents’ house from Georgia to Brevard, N.C. as a child/teenager. There were a lot of trips to Katherine’s Kitchen to buy a country ham biscuit on the way to Glade Creek Road in Pisgah Forest, N.C. to visit my grandparents.”

Approximately 21 years ago, when Reid was a freshmen at Newberry College, he received heartbreaking news.

“I received news from my mother (Denise Reid) via a phone call that my dad had sold the Chevrolet Nomad to a man who worked with my Uncle Ronald Reid at Ecusta in Brevard, N.C.,” Zeb Reid said. “It was a bitter pill to swallow, mom and dad needed space in the garage at the time, and mom had a new car. Dad has his 58 Vette in the garage and wanted to make room since he bought mom a new vehicle.”

However, Reid’s uncle told him who purchased the car and gave him his home phone number. Reid said he would call and ask about it, but the new owner was not interested in selling it. About seven years ago, Reid got the owner’s cell phone number, and about every six months he would call or text and ask him if he was interested in selling.

“Earlier this year I received a dollar amount he wanted to buy the car back. Dad and I drove up to see the vehicle and the next day the vehicle was back home,” Reid said. “To our surprise it had the same floor mats my dad put in years ago, nothing had really changed.”

Now, after 20 plus years, Reid has the Nomad back in his possession, and interestingly enough, his son, Zarek Reid, has taken a similar interest in it.

“My son has really taken an interest in this Nomad, it’s the one car he wants to ride in, go do things in. When he walks by it he pats the roof. He really enjoys this Nomad,” Zeb Reid said.

Reid said for a car in it’s early 60s, it is in good shape. Adding that it has had a lot of engine work, and had a transmission rebuilt.

“It is a rare car, Nomads were only made 1955-57, in my opinion the 1955 is the most desirable. You’d be amazed the folks who look and follow these cars, you don’t find them for sale very often,” he said.

However, if you think Reid might sell it, think again. He said it is not going to happen, it will be a car that he will share memories with his family. However, if you would like to see the Nomad, he invites everyone to attend the Midlands SC Muscle & Classic Cars Cruise-Ins. The first one will be on April 28 at Little Mountain Antiques from noon until 2 p.m.

Zeb, Zoe and Zarek Reid with the 1955 Chevrolet Nomad., Zoe and Zarek Reid with the 1955 Chevrolet Nomad. Courtesy of the Reid Family
The 1955 Chevrolet Nomad. 1955 Chevrolet Nomad. Courtesy of the Reid Family
Zeb, Zarek and Mike Reid with the the 1955 Chevrolet Nomad., Zarek and Mike Reid with the the 1955 Chevrolet Nomad. Courtesy of the Reid Family

By Andrew Wigger

Reach Andrew Wigger at 803-276-0625 ext. 1867 or on Twitter @ TheNBOnews.