There are a lot of ways to recognize the men and women that have fought in the United States military to maintain our freedoms, but in the automotive industry, there is no better way than to create a special honorary car. There are quite a few of these vehicles out there these days, but the 1932 Ford Hi-Boy dubbed “Metal of Honor” featured on TCI Engineering’s Facebook page is probably one of the coolest we’ve seen yet.
The beneficiary was set to be a scholarship program that would benefit children of slain and disabled soldiers provided by the IronMen Foundation, and after Kenny Gollihan of Brookville Roadster donated a brand new 1932 Ford roaster body, the contributions from the hot rod industry began pouring in.
By October of 2009, the Metal of Honor project had just about everything it needed.
Total Cost Involved provided the full chassis for the project, and other companies like Inland Empire, House of Kolor, Classic Instruments, Ididit Inc., PowerMaster, Hot RodAir, Stainles Works, Gennie Shifter, Walker Radiator, Rodware and even the Ford Motor Company donated components for the build. Services and space to build the special hot rod were also donated by companies like Custom Classics, Bob Drake Inc, Willett Coachworks and Steve’s Auto Restoration.
Built and perfected mostly by volunteers, Metal of Honor made its automotive show debut at the 2011 Detroit Autorama before heading to Washington, DC for the Fourth of July Parade. On July 23rd, 2011 Metal of Honor made a trip to Schaumburg, Illinois where the car was met by 34 Medal of Honor (the highest military decoration awarded to service men and women) recipients for a special signing event, after which the car was taken for a tour around the country collecting even more signatures from Medal of Honor recipients.
In January of this year, Metal of Honor was auctioned off at the Barrett-Jackson Scottsdale event, with the hammer dropping at $150,000. All the proceeds of the sale went to the IronMen Foundation to use toward higher-education scholarships for children who’s parents were killed or disabled fighting for our country.
Honorary cars are so near and dear to the people who create them, as well as to our service men and women, their families and anyone who knows the sacrifices that our troops make. What a wonderful way to honor our soldiers!
For more information on Metal of Honor, its cross-country tour, and a full build photo gallery, you can visit the IronMen Foundation website here.