The "Blue Truck"
WGSF Television acquired a Ford Route Van that became a mainstay of transportation
for several years, both during the latter years of WGSF and for several years
after the move to the Newark High School campus.
For discussion starters:
The truck had a manual shift transmission, which presented a challenge to
some of the younger WGSF staffers. I remember waiting through several traffic
light changes while observing a neophyte driver struggle to master the clutch
and gas feed, the driver all the while becoming more frustrated. The truck
just 'died' on each attempt, but the lesson was eventually successful.
Another youthful driver had a chilling experience while traversing the first
big curve on the down-hill run from the station on Horn's Hill. The steering
locked up, and the truck ended up between two trees, headed back up the hill
the hard way. Took two wreckers to extricate 'Ole Blue from that precarious
position. Did that deter the driver from ever driving again - truck or auto?
No way! After necessary repairs to the steering, she was back at it
again. I knew that person was headed for a successful career, and it was
Another incident at the junction of 21st Street and and Moul St. tested the
mettle of two other voyagers in the Blue truck. Smoke began pouring out from
under the dash.
The truck had a few years on it, and mucho milage, when we got it. The metal
was no longer pristine, yea, there were a few openings in places that Ford
had not provided in the original design. A few strategically placed bricks
covered the most problematic holes. While tooling out Route 16 past Cherry
Valley intersection one rainy day, I looked back to see a 'rooster tail'
of water kicking up from the tires. INSIDE the van! Some enterprising and
clean freak do-gooder had cleaned out the truck for my trip, including the
essential bricks covering the holes in the floor.
It served to transport all of the equipment from the station to the high
school campus after WGSF closed. It was still used as the Mini-mote for some
time, and other innumerable transportation tasks, until finally pulled from
service in the late 70's.