The last time George Talley saw his 1979 Chevy Corvette, it was parked on Detroit's Jefferson Avenue.
That was 1981. Three weeks ago, Talley, got a telephone call from motor club AAA to tell him that his prized silver belle had been found – in Hattiesburg, Miss. And on July 1, outside General Motors' headquarters in Detroit, he slid into the driver's seat and started it up for the first time in 33 years.
"It was a lucky day to hear that my car had been found," said Talley. "They told me it was running, had 47,000 miles on it and was ready for me to pick up."
However, Talley, 71, wasn't certain he could afford to have it shipped home – until General Motors intervened. Company officials got wind of the story and picked up the tab to bring the car back to Motown.
"George's story brought a smile to my face," said Mark Reuss, a GM executive. "As a long-time Corvette owner myself, I know the passion the car inspires. I also knew that car belonged home in Detroit, with its rightful owner, and we could make that happen."
Talley, a former GM employee, says he has been a long-time Corvette fan and has owned four in total: a 1968, 1979, 1986 and 2011.
Mississippi Bureau of Investigation officials said the Corvette was found 1,350 kilometres away at a Mississippi residence. Authorities found the car when someone tried to register two Corvettes with the same vehicle ID number, the Detroit News reported.
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