An Oregon State Police car from 1950, which has been restored to its original condition, greets you along with dozens of other restored vehicles from the past as you walk in the front door of the Exhibit Building at the Douglas County Fairgrounds.
The black 2-door Chevrolet sedan with a gold OSP decal on each door was restored by Tim McLain, the former superintendent of the Oregon State Police. McLain started his law enforcement career in Roseburg.
It’s one of about 70 vehicles that are displayed in the Roseburg Benefit Car Show this weekend, organized by the Stray Angels and the Umpqua Flatheads car clubs. Money raised at the event will go to Douglas County Search and Rescue and the Douglas County Special Materials Fund that helps children with disabilities.
McLain, who was an OSP trooper in Roseburg from 1979 to 1991, came down from Shedd, near Albany, for the show.
“I always knew I wanted to come to this show, I always liked Roseburg and I always liked that it’s a benefit car show,” McLain said.
The restoration of the car took about eight years for McLain and his wife Jewel McLain. He’s found nostalgic accessories from that time to go with the car, including one of the early radar guns, an RCA radio, a fingerprint kit, a driver’s manual from 1949, and a citation booklet along with other collectibles from the era.
“I’m a history buff when it comes to the department and this is mainly to keep a piece of history and I’ve been looking for one I could say was an original police car, and I know the name of the guys that drove it, and it’s kind of a tribute to the men and women who wore the boots before me.”
Tom Doss, president of Umpqua Flatheads, said last year the clubs were able to donate $9,000 to split between the two agencies and they hope to match that this year.
“We’ve donated to the special equipment fund for a number of years, we just picked charities in the county that were of a need and we feel good about them,” Doss said. “It’s the same with the search and rescue, they had a need and we could fulfill it.”
Douglas County Search and Rescue volunteer Deanna Boyd. said the money really helps with equipment and supplies.
“We use it for equipment, and the search and rescue is all volunteer and we have over 100 people in the program,” she said. “You just need to be over 14 and we can find something for you to do.”
Jeanine Coffey with the Douglas County Special Materials Fund said 100 percent of the money they get goes directly toward financial assistance to families that have children with disabilities.
“The program can help the family purchase orthotic braces, walkers, weighted blankets and iPads for kids with autism,” Coffey said. “They give us a big chunk of change and both of these programs are good stewards of the dollar.”
The classic car show continues Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $6, children under 12 are free with an adult.
The show was scheduled for Douglas Hall but had to be shifted to the Exhibit Building this year because of storm damage to the roof on Douglas Hall.