May 4, 2013, Keyport, NJ by Mike Holler
Car shows are traditionally a place where hobbyists gather to show off their pride and joy, while admiring the fine specimens of fellow enthusiasts. This past Saturday (May 4), Straub Motors (Keyport, New Jersey) assembled one of the finest home-town gatherings I’ve been privileged to attend. Although Straub specializes in Buick and GMC brands, many makes were represented from turn of the last century to fairly late model offerings. Show cars ranged from a six-figure Lamborghini and Ford Talladega to T-Buckets and a retro-dragster. A DJ played the golden oldies, while a caterer served hot dogs and ice cream.
For many, this is a familiar experience. Having attended numerous shows over the past 3+ decades, I never expected the inspiring surprise in store. Remsen Straub has earned his stellar reputation by engaging with the community. The car show is one great example. In addition to publicity events, Remsen has stored restaurant equipment for a local business affected by Hurricane Sandy, and many other generous deeds.
William Keegan, a retired Port Authority Officer, was introduced by Remsen as the Founder and President of H.E.A.R.T 911. Like many other service oriented professionals, retirement left a gaping hole in his heart. He missed helping others. When the 911 tragedy struck, William, like many others, found himself in the midst of mayhem doing what wasn’t even asked; saving lives and restoring order. From this ordeal emerged H.E.A.R.T 911, a volunteer organization dedicated to help disaster stricken communities rebuild, pair victims with mental health professionals, and build housing for wounded returning veterans. Furthermore, their work takes them all over the US, not just the northeast.
H.E.A.R.T 911 owns a trailer used to transport equipment to job sites. Unfortunately, they had to rent a truck to tow the trailer. Being a volunteer group, these costs were considerable over time. In the spirit of giving back to the community, Straub Motors donated a new utility truck to the cause. I must confess, this act of love so touched my heart I had to excuse myself, hide behind a 1 of 18 surviving 1953 Buick convertibles where I could quietly cry my eyes out. It was more than I could contain.
Let’s honor the 536 members of H.E.A.R.T 911 and the fine folks at Straub Motors for doing what’s inconvenient, what others are reluctant to do, by giving of themselves for their love of fellow man.