Friday, 29 April 2011 19:10

Local Repair Shops, Vendors Refinish San Diego Marine's Mustang

Sgt. Edward Flak II returned from his third tour in Afghanistan on April 22 to find his '94 Mustang GT missing from his garage.
The 26-year-old Marine from Temecula, CA, had purchased the car second hand from a friend about 4 years ago and couldn't afford to repair the vehicle between his tours to the Middle East.

"When he left, the first thing he said about money was save money so I can get my car done when I get back," Flak's wife, Krissy told 10 News San Diego.

Unbeknownst to Flak, Krissy and Janet and Jim Bird of Bird Family Tire and Auto in Temecula decided to repair the car for him while he was gone.

The Birds' daughter attends school with the Flak's daughter and the subject of refinishing Flak's Mustang came up one day. Krissy had been getting quotes of upwards of $10,000 to repair the Mustang while Flak was overseas.

The crew at Bird Family Tire and Auto repaired the car's engine and Bob and Shelley Kantin of Precision Paint and Body Works signed on to do the refinishing through a mutual contact with Jim Bird.

"My original estimate for the body work on the car was $7,800 and I told Krissy if she could pay for about half of that, then the rest I would donate," said Bob.

Precision repaired some accident damage done to the vehicles left, rear quarter panel, hand-made a body kit Flak had purchased for the car fit properly, bought and installed new fenders, painted the vehicle and redid the interior with some carpet and seat upholstery from Flak's uncle.

Kantin was able to get Smitty's Auto Paint to donate some clear, primer and silver paint for the vehicle as well.

Audio Addictions, All Out Paintless Dent Removal, Acappella Hair Design, Rancho Auto Parts, All Season Tint, SoCal Jax Wax, Pole Position and the local VFW Post also made donations and helped in the refinishing process to get the Mustang ready for Flak's return.

"Thank you guys so much, it's so beautiful," Flak said of the car's reveal to San Diego's North County Times.

The car took about 5 weeks to complete, with many overtime and weekend hours put in to get the car ready for Flak's return; the crew at Precision Paint and Body Works even worked Easter Sunday to finish the vehicle in time.

"I think we took one day off in the 5 weeks it took to repair the car," said Kantin.

"Eddie was so surprised and it was so hard to keep this a secret for 2 months," said Krissy, "Thanks to ... all who made this dream come true for my husband, he deserves every bit of it."

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