Dream Rebuild for U.S. Navy Survivor

Like many Copart members, one of Steve Connor’s biggest dreams was to complete a custom vehicle rebuild. Connor’s great grandmother gifted him with her 1967 Dodge Dart and that is where the dream began.

However, the gift came under unusual and unfortunate circumstances. On November 12, 2004, a tragic accident caused the U.S. Navy veteran to lose both of his legs. After being in a coma for weeks, Connor, a former second class machinist mate, came under the care of his wife Keri Connor.

Keri shared the story with Lyon McClenahan’s wife. She explained that the Dodge Dart was a gift to Steve Connor as a symbol for his courage and his dream of fixing up the car. Lyon and his team at Finish Line Speed Shop stepped up to the plate to make Connor’s dream happen.

Lyon reached out to Copart in 2014 in search of a donor car for the rebuild. After some discussion, Copart procured a low-mileage 2006 Dodge Charger Daytona R/T to help with the rebuild.

Although the Connors expected only a paint job for their Dodge Charger, the team at Finish Line made extensive renovations.

The Gen 3 HEMI and automatic transmission was used from the donor vehicle. To help the HEMI produce some extra power Finish Line used an Airaid Cold Air intake and PowerAcid throttle body spacer. To cool the big HEMI down, a Flex-A-Lite aluminum radiator and electric fan module was used. A Painless Performance wiring harness was used to help Steve and Keri keep tabs on the vehicle’s vital information.  Click here for a complete summary of the rebuild.

The crew decided the live 2015 SEMA Show in Las Vegas would be the perfect time to unveil the vehicle to the Connors.

“They didn’t realize it was their car at first,” McClenahan said. “They hadn’t seen it for a year and a half, so when they realized it was theirs, they were pretty awestruck.”

Check out the pictures of the final product:



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