Louisville resident Lynda Patterson was devastated when she saw pictures and video of the massive sinkhole that opened beneath the National Corvette Museum in Bowling Green on February 12.
Her eyes were fixated on the 40th Anniversary Corvette sticking tail up from the debris. As the owner of one herself, Patterson told WKU Public Radio that it was like looking at her own car.
“It’s a different mindset when you own Corvettes," she explained. "I don’t know what happens to you, but you kind of get screwy, and your heart sinks when you see one of these gorgeous automobiles in trouble.”
Seeing the crushed ruby red Corvette made Patterson want to give the museum her Ruby.
“Twenty years ago when my husband and I set up our trust, we had it in our trust that we would donate our Ruby to the museum, when the time came, when the last of us was gone," said Patterson. "When I saw it in the hole, and my husband had died about 18 months ago, I thought this is the time, she should go now.”
The Patterson’s bought the car 22 years ago after immediately falling in love with it in the showroom of a Chevrolet dealership. Fighting back tears, Patterson delivered her Ruby to the museum on Thursday.
“It was a bittersweet thing to give her up,” expressed Patterson.
Marketing and Communications Director Katie Frassinelli says the museum is looking forward to taking the car off of display.
“Lynda definitely wants us to drive it. She wants it used in parades, she wants it taken to schools,” said Frassinelli. “She really wants the car out and about.”
With the Patterson donation, the National Corvette Museum will eventually have two 40th Anniversary cars. The one pulled from the sinkhole is expected to be restored by General Motors.