INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – An Indianapolis teenager fighting cancer and a very old car in very rough shape got a special surprise on Tuesday morning.
19-year-old JD Casper was at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway thinking he was there for a special tour and a ride in a Camaro pace car with Indy Car driver JR Hildebrand.
JD has come a long way in the past few years. At age 16, he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Then a drunk driver hit his car and totaled it. So his uncle and dad worked out a trade. And JD got his Uncle’s old car. A 1974 Pontiac Grand Ville Convertible.
It was in rough shape. JD hoped someday to restore it. Instead Make A Wish did it for him, and JD got the car in a surprise moment at IMS.
JD had no idea, his old car would be new again.
“Thank you, thank you all,” he said as friends and family watched the surprise on his face and the tears in his eyes.
Then JD got a bonus. Sitting next to JR Hildebrand as they take the new “74” for it’s maiden voyage around the old brickyard. JD, still excited about his ride around the speedway in his newly restored vehicle.
“I’m in remission at this point in time and I’m just trying to go through life right now.” And then he looks at the convertible and says, “I have my own car now and it’s just wow.”
After his visit to the track, JD took his restored car and made his first stop, the gas station. Then he said he was heading to show it to his aunt.
He promised her, when his uncle gave him the car, that she would be the first one to see it after he was able to restore it. It happened much sooner than he expected.