When I was 16 years old, my father bought me this Jeep, CJ-5. I cannot tell you how many miles I traveled in it hunting, how many deer I killed and hauled out of the woods in it, and how many miles I traveled playing around in it when I attended Ole Miss. Of course, the sorority girls loved it up at Ole Miss and this old Jeep was a tool I used to meet some beautiful women up there!
By 1994 was married and had just had our first son, Thomas. That next year, I bought my first truck (in ’95) and I sold this Jeep.
I didn’t see it again for 20 years.
Then as Cindy and I added a second son (Jordan) and I began introducing these boys to the woods and honing, as they grew they heard me talking about the old Jeep and they found some photos of it here at our house. They started pushing me about and I told them many stories about hunting in the Jeep and etc. That led to them then pushing me to find it and buy it back and this went on for a year or so. They were very, very persistent and would not let it drop.
I had sold the Jeep to guy here in town, but I heard he later sold it to someone over in the hills. One day at Kroger I ran into the person I sold it to, “Who did you end up selling my old Jeep to up in the hills, I might want to contact him?” I asked.
“Not sure what you are talking about, I didn’t sell it to anyone, it is out at my shop in the barn collecting dust and we have not cranked it up in many years,” he responded.
Jackpot! I thought. I couldn’t believe after 20 years he still had it.
Needless to say, I went to work on this guy and after a few months I finally convinced him to sell it back to me and I paid much more for it than I sold it to him. My sons were ecstatic. It took almost a year for one of my mechanics to totally dismantle it, then install new parts and renovated parts and I ended up spending twice the amount of my money I had intended to.
Middle son, Jordan who graduated from Ole Miss this past May, has had the old Jeep in Oxford for the past three years. Last week he brought it back to me and now it is under my care and control and that is how it shall remain from now on as this is one of the only things I have left from my father who died several years ago.
And, I’ll never let it get away from me again.
Scott Coopwood is a seventh-generation Deltan who lives in Cleveland, Mississippi with his wife Cindy and their three children. Scott is the publisher and owner of Delta Magazine, one of the South’s leading lifestyle publications, the Delta Business Journal, the first business publication in the Mississippi Delta; and Cleveland’s weekly newspaper, The Cleveland Current. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.