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The life of trikes

Posted October 02, 2013 in Community Featured, Johnston
Kurt Barz’s father had his childhood tricycle restored after it was run over.

Kurt Barz’s father had his childhood tricycle restored after it was run over.

As we make our way through life, we must decide what to keep and what to leave behind. The next generation decides it doesn’t want or simply doesn’t need the same things as their fathers before them. But sometimes a father keeps something his son tossed aside because he knows — some day — the son will wish he hadn’t.

“One day my dad just asked me, ‘Do you remember your tricycle?’ and I was like, no,” says Kurt Barz. “I guess he had kept it in his shed all these years. He said he had it fixed up and restored. They did a great job with it.”

As the story goes, the trike was purchased in 1960 from a hardware store in Clarion — Barz and his family lived in Dows on their farm. A couple years passed by, and one day the trike was run over by a lumber truck making a delivery to the farm. Barz’s uncle, Dennis Peterson, spent several hours straightening up the trike as best he could. The lumber truck driver felt so bad about running over the trike he took Barz back to his own hardware store in Rowen and let him pick out a new trike (which they no longer have).

Interestingly enough, the lumber truck driver, Don Mathiason, just celebrated his 100th birthday this year, and he talked to Barz’s father, Bill, about whether he remembered when he ran over the trike. Of course each had, and they shared a chuckle over the incident.

“My dad had the tricycle restored about a year ago, and it looks like new,” Barz says. “Unfortunately it’s already been scuffed up a little bit on the front of the handlebars. We let the neighborhood kids take it for a ride.”

Considering Barz never really thought he’d see this slice of his youth ever again, he doesn’t have any set plans for what he wants to do with the trike. At the moment he’s just happy to have the story and the memories, but who knows what the future holds?

“My daughter just recently got engaged, so maybe she’ll have some kids here and they can ride it,” he says.

Contact Darren at 953-4822 ext. 304 or to recommend someone for an upcoming issue of “What’s In Your Garage?”

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