NOBLESVILLE — This story starts 42 years ago when Jack Hutchens was ready to buy a new car.
"I went with him when he ran to Lebanon and saw this '77 Oldsmobile Delta 88," Hutchens son, also named Jack Hutchens, said. "It was gorgeous. Two-door, shiny silver paint and he just bought it on the spot."
It was a vehicle that spent a lot of time sitting in a garage.
"He didn't drive it a lot. There wasn't a lot of miles on it — 64,000 actual miles on it right now," Hutchens said.
Laci Randle is Jack the younger's niece and Jack the elder's granddaughter.
"It was always just clean and immaculate," Randle said. "He loved this vehicle. I remember riding in this vehicle."
That's why it hurt so much when it was stolen a few days ago from Hutchens' Noblesville home.
"I just made a post on Facebook asking my community and friends to share that just to raise some awareness," Randle said.
"I came out the next morning to go to work, and it was gone," Hutchens said. "Sitting right here, as a matter of fact."
When Hutchens' father passed away in 2002, the car became his.
"It became more special I guess after I inherited it," Hutchens said. "It's a family heirloom."
That's what makes the theft so hard to take. It's a part of the family legacy.
"My son was next in line, and he is very upset," Hutchen's said.
For Hutchens and Randle, the car was a reminder of a great man who put family first, above all.
"I inherited it. It was my dad's. My dad and I worked together. My dad and I fished together. He was my buddy. It belongs back with the family," Hutchens said.