Muscle car inspires million-dollar flex

Muscle car inspires million-dollar flex

Muscle car inspires million-dollar flex

The cleanup effort in Florida after Hurricane Ian recently got a big boost thanks to several generous car enthusiasts.

In the world of muscle cars, few names carry more weight than Carroll Shelby. His makeover of the Ford Mustang and its 760 horsepower V8 will make any auto buff's heart skip a beat.

Florida philanthropist George Shinn wanted to contribute to his state's recovery after Hurricane Ian, so he bought one of the few 2022 Shelby Ford Mustang GT500 Heritage Editions made and agreed to let Barrett-Jackson, an American collector car auction company headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona, auction it off – proceeds to be split between the State of Florida and Samaritan's Purse.

"It was a beautiful car," accounts Edward Graham of the Christian charity. "I hadn't seen it 'til I got down there. It is quite the collector's piece."

Only 255 were made, each retailing for more than $112,000. An anonymous collector bid $400,000 and won the car, and that is when the surprises started.

Graham, Edward (Samaritan's Purse) Graham

"We were waiting for them to take photos, and then that's when the leadership of Barrett-Jackson goes, "Hey, we have some interesting news…. The buyer wants to donate the money and wants to re-auction and have that money go, too,'" Graham details.

A second buyer bought the car for $300,000. Former TV talk host Kathie Lee Gifford and NASCAR owner Rick Hendrick also went on to pitch in for the auction, which ultimately raised more than $1 million.

"We have three disaster teams and sites going on down there," Graham relays about Samaritan's Purse. "This is tractor trailer teams with support trucks and equipment that are serving in three different areas: Fort Myers, Englewood, and Punta Gorda, Florida."

Those teams are grateful to be receiving half of the funds the auto auction raised.