New Member Interview with Don Richard

My wife is basically a camping professional. She grew up camping with her family. Me on the other hand did not. My father was a fantastic mechanic who could basically restore anything from antique cars to vintage airplanes. I spent my youth in the garage with him. I’m no where near the mechanical genius he was, just competent. Well my wife Diana wanted to have a camper just for us. Diana really liked the canned hams from the 50’s. Since I married well above myself I wanted to do this camper for her. Two weeks later at the Auburn Cord auto Auction and swap meet I found a 1956 Shasta. The guy wanted 100.00 for her. Yes she was that bad. Thought he should have payed me to take her. I gave the guy the money and sent pictures to Diana trying to convince her to let me buy her. Yes that was backwards but I pulled it off. This camper had at least three possum skeletons inside and now she was ours.  

Our first family camper was a late 70’s 18 ft can’t remember the name camper. Kids grew we moved up to a 33ft mallard. Learned long campers are stressful to pull and park so we downsized to a 26 foot with a super slide out. Now we have a 1956 Shasta my wife calls Little Lilly. We plan on giving her to our children when that time comes. If I were to restore another one it would probably be a small Airfloat. Love the port hole windows. 

We have towed her with my 2001 Ford 1/2 ton, or my wife’s Infinity QX 60. I am half way through restoring a 1952 Chevy 5 window pick up that will take over towing when finished. I’m also restoring a 1964 Vespa to ride in the truck bed on our camping trips. 

We are mainly state park campers. My wife works weekends, and she has  limited vacation time. We haven’t been to a rally yet, but are working on getting to one next summer. 

Joined Tin Can Tourists mainly out of curiosity. Started looking at the classified’s. I thought this could be a good information resource. I enjoy the personal stories of the people who love these vintage campers. 

We are planning a month long trip out west to the mighty five in Utah, and returning via the Badlands, maybe Yellowstone. Guess we’ll see. 

1 comment

  1. Wow! Love the wood on the sink cabinets! 3 dead possum skeletons. We had a massive bee nest! I wonder how the possums got stuck?

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