Dave Neumann and Dennis Mollenkopf discussed a plan in 1963 for the Auto Removal Club. The name refers to specific class winners in sanctionable drag races such as Top Stock and Top Modified Class Eliminator. Dave Hancock said they have added a few friends from the area to make the plans, including John Kinneriman, Larry Stewart, Rick Caleb, Ross Raefsnyder, Dennis, Bob Mollenkopf, Mike Schnabel, Ron Raybuck, Daryl Stevenson and Rick Smith. They were known for their white shirts, skinny black ties and their new logo featuring a small hole Model A Ford Coupe. The abrasives have also been recognized by the National Automobile Clubs Registry.
Their club held dances Saturday nights at the Junior Order Hall above Toyland in Sullivan. Later, a dance took place in 1964 at the Crawford County Fairgrounds with the Johnny Gibson Trio (Beachcomber tune) a 1960s group popular in Toledo and Detroit. They also had road rallies similar to poker tours and car shows to continue their community projects.
In 1964, the club purchased a 1956 Pontiac two-door roof. Skip Krauslock—a member of the 1950s NASCAR team and owner of Krauslock Oldsmobile-Cadillac Garage—guided them through building his engine. John Rossington is the current owner of the building known as Ohio Auto Parts. (See his story on March 19, 2022).
Removers were reorganized around 1998
In the late 1960s, members were going to college, getting married, and having families, and the group broke up. Reorganized from 1998 to 1999 and Glenn Steiner opened his home at the time for monthly meetings; New officers have been named and the group has already taken off. The club started a 50/50 lottery with half of the proceeds to the winner and the other half to the treasury. The group has continued to grow to the current membership of 150 members with the oldest being in his early 1990s.
The removers decided to do charity work. The annual Graffiti Tour was held downtown, and that group hired Eliminators to manage the gates. Their job was to let in only classic cars and not ultimately pass the “lake crowd” and semi-trucks. Graffiti’s group is now called “Cruising with the Cops” after its old audience has retired. The loyalists use their money for charitable purposes or wherever there is hardship in the club or community. They also donated bricks to the Courtroom Veterans Hall of Fame and bricks to Great American Crossroads Park.
The Eliminators started their annual McDonald’s auto show 13 years ago, and in their best year, they had 170 cars. They raised $32,000, especially for Ronald MacDonald’s home in Columbus. They also ring the Salvation Army bell at Walmart and Kroger on Christmas. During their meeting in November, they held a Non-Perishable Food Campaign for the Salvation Army, raising £9,800 so far and US$3,000 in cash. The club also participated in ODOT’s 15-year Highway Adoption Program at Ohio 98 Northeast City. Eliminators also have signs at six locations welcoming people to Bucyrus.
The group members made 127 trips
Members take a lot of trips driving their classic cars. Since 2003 they have made 127 trips including restoring classic cars, auto parts and the Warther’s Train Museum; Goodyear Blimp Research Center, NASA and Ohio Highway Patrol. They’ve visited machine stores, a welding school, auto shows, and collectors’ museums with a garage full of cars. Arland McMichael takes pride in their selection of places that serve up good food and ice cream, including in Amish country.
The meetings are usually held in the garage of the various members. It’s fun to spend an evening sharing things about their cars. The club hosts family and friends who gather in Glens with auction, food and ice cream. Among the special honors to lead projects are Jim Eddington with the Salvation Army coordinator, and Jim Brown (GB) and Tom Starner, tour coordinators.
The Eliminators’ next charity event will be at Bucyrus McDonald’s on September 18, whether it’s raining or sunny. Members distribute 2500 flyers. Registration is $10 and takes place from 1 to 3 p.m. The show runs from 1 to 5 p.m. that day. There will be nice activities – disc jockey with old tunes, 50/50 drawing and lots of door prizes. We welcome any make or model of cars. If the day is rainy, they will get 50 cars; A beautiful sunny day brings out 150. Collectors are very shy about rain falling on their cars.
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