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Old 12-12-2009, 10:34 AM
el hemi el hemi is offline
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Default The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Hello everyone! Great website. What an amazing number of great cars and owners I see here at YENKO.NET. Here is a story I’d like to share with you.

Today is a very special day for me. It marks the 40th anniversary of the day my father (RIP) took delivery of what has become a permanent fixture in the ESCALANTE family, A 1970 Dodge Hemi Challenger R/T (EL HEMI).

It was a Friday morning December 12, 1969 when my father went to Northwestern Dodge in Detroit to pick up the car he had ordered a few weeks prior…..an orange with black stripe machine and a HEMI in between the fenders. This HEMI, the motor he had sworn to one day own after hearing one outside a restaurant in Venezuela was now his!

My dad was 27 yrs old and I was 4 when EL HEMI came home. What he did not realize when he bought the car was that it would also become the greatest source of bonding with his two sons and grandsons. Any time you expose kids to kool cars, awesome sounds, and speed, a bond starts to form. In our case it surely did….a bond between our father, ourselves, and this kool car. A recipe that continues to work as my brother Gus and I use it to pass along grandpa’s passion for DODGE MATERIAL among other things.

There are numerous stories and memories we want to share with you. One such story was dad’s drive from Detroit to Chicago in late winter to have the car Dyno Tuned at Mr. Norms. The frequent visits he paid notorious speed shops in the Detroit area where he spent every dime (according to my mom) on the car, were all documented as he kept every receipt for the purchases.

For now…let us pay tribute to an awesome father-grandfather and car enthusiast……Jose Escalante. A good friend of ours convinced us to put our story on a website for people to see and friends and family all over the world to keep up with this kool car we all call EL HEMI. We just updated our website. Check it out. http://www.elhemi.com

“Son….rev it up..c’mon keep it alive…don’t let it die!!!” Dad’s words as I was learning how to drive EL HEMI. I was 14. I am now 44. I can still hear his words when I start the car and occasionally wrestle with the cold natured elephant!

Here is the FAMILIA picture. I am the one in blue jacket

With my brother Gus


Daytona 1972 - DAY TWO LOOK


Tail end of its resto




My father's last visit to see his baby - 3 months after this picture was taken he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Lasted just enough to give me time to jump on a plane and be by his side until his last breath.


There is more at http://www.elhemi.com
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Old 12-12-2009, 04:31 PM
Ngtflyr Ngtflyr is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Let me be the first to say, Welcome Aboard! Lot of closet Mopar enthusiasts here. Very story, great to see it stay in the family. Love the El Hemi moniker.
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Old 12-12-2009, 05:04 PM
TDW TDW is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Great car and story! The old pictures are just so cool! I will check out your web-site.
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Old 12-12-2009, 05:07 PM
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njsteve njsteve is online now
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Awesome!

Welcome to the site.


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Old 12-12-2009, 05:46 PM
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m22mike m22mike is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Welcome Juan
WOW.. ...cool story, cool vintage pic,s, very neat websight, and there is a little closet Mopar in all these Chevy guy's....
Sorry to hear about you Dad, my dad just passed at 88.
Oh Yea...we love pictures, anymore old stuff..
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Old 12-12-2009, 07:05 PM
Charley Lillard Charley Lillard is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

I hate Mopars..... :-)
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:04 PM
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mockingbird812 mockingbird812 is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Juan - welcome aboard! What a terrific family story with "El Hemi"!. You have a very nice website.
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Old 12-12-2009, 08:08 PM
sYc sYc is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Cool story..and car...thanks for sharing it with us.
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Old 12-12-2009, 09:11 PM
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markjohnson markjohnson is online now
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

WOW! Some of them really did come with dog-dish hubcaps!
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Old 12-12-2009, 09:21 PM
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Mr70 Mr70 is offline
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Default Re: The Escalantes '70 Challenger R/T "EL HEMI"

Welcome
Great story with even better pictures.
Do you still have that orange Dodge jacket your fathers wearing in that pic too?
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