American Jet Cars
Stories & Comments
David Tatroe
 Bar


Once Bobby and I were headed for Kahoka, Missouri. Bobby was to run a 1/8th mile strip there. After setting up at a fairgrounds to display and draw a crowd for the next day at the dragstrip, we proceeded to the track. It was mid-morning on Sunday and as Bobby and I walked the track, there were two things that bothered me.

One was the asphalt toward the end of the track was already so hot that our feet sort of sunk into it. Worse than the shape of the track was the distance he had to stop the car.

NOT ENOUGH !!

He was concerned but Bobby was not a man to be scared. The crowd was the largest this little raceway had ever had. Bobby wanted to make this a day they would NEVER forget, and he did. After his first run, I chased down the track to get him. He was out of the car looking at the short foot or two that was left of the track before he would have been completely off the track.

Back at the starting line, last of three runs, the announcer was pushing the button that he was going to break 160 MPH this last run. The crowd was nuts. If Walt would have been there, I'm sure he would have encouraged Bobby not to consider this.

That run was 166 MPH. When I got to him the car was off the track by half a car length. He was more popular than Superman. I'm sure his name is still in the minds of all that were there that day. He had the key to the city that night.

B U T, that is not the story, this just sets it up.

This was the Bobby Tatroe I knew.

We were on our way to Kahoka earlier that week. Bobby was driving through one of the prettiest small towns I've ever seen. As we were going around a corner on this awesome tree lined street, there on the sidewalk was a young boy in a wheelchair. He was raising his hand for Bobby to blow the air horn.

I don't know how Bobby did it, but he pulled on the air horn, hung out the window waving and drove at the same time. When we were past the boy, I looked over at Bob, he had tears steaming down his face and my BIG brother, the hero of my life, was crying.

That's the Bob Tatroe I remember.

This is a wonderful thing you've done here Chips. I can see Bobby Tatroe in you.

God Bless you real big.

David W. Tatroe


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