Couple confronts suspects, retrieves stolen Model T hot rod

An elderly couple got their 1923 Ford T-Bucket back after confronting the thieves who stole it.

PORTLAND, Ore. -- A Portland couple has a cherished antique car and a motorcycle back thanks to Facebook.

On Friday, thieves stole a trailer containing a refurbished 1929 Ford Model T and a 2004 Honda motorcycle from outside Ron and Doreen Oaks’ Southeast Portland home.

“I was upset at myself for having my trailer out in front of my house,” said Ron. “Which sounds silly, because you shouldn’t have to worry about that kind of stuff.”

He said that he has spent over $20,000 in parts for the Model T over the last few years.

After the theft, Doreen posted a picture of the car to her Facebook page along with her phone number, asking people to keep an eye out for the Model T.

Sure enough, the Facebook post worked. On Sunday afternoon, Doreen received a call from a woman identified as Angie, saying that she had spotted the Model T while driving around.

“She said, ‘Oh, I just saw your car. These guys were pushing it,’” Doreen said, adding that she had no idea who Angie was. Doreen said she made her Facebook post about the stolen car public, but it’s still not clear how Angie spotted it.

“I was just driving down Powell and saw some guys pushing [the car] out of the road into [an] apartment complex and thought ‘I remember seeing that on Facebook,’” Angie said in a message to KGW.

Angie told the couple she spotted the car at the Glenwood Apartments on Powell, about three and a half miles from their home.  The couple quickly rushed over and found two men attempting to jumpstart the antique car in the apartment parking lot. The motorcycle was also there.

“They said they didn’t know anything about it. They were just working on it,” Ron scoffed. He said he argued with the men, and after mentioning that he had called police, the men fled the scene.  

“I was relieved that it was still in one piece,” said Doreen of the Model T. The trailer that was holding the car and motorcycle is still missing, but the Oakses are happy to have the vehicles back.

While initially skeptical of his wife’s Facebook post, Ron admitted that the post was critical to finding the vehicles.

“I’m not a big social media guy, but it worked,” he said. “I’ve got nothing bad to say about it now.”

“Now he says he’ll never tease me about Facebook again,” said Doreen.

© 2017 KGW-TV


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