Honolulu, Hawaii 1947 – A year after being discharged from the service, US Navy Fighter Pilot Jim Lundy was still in Hawaii and his family wanted him to come home to the main land. For a young man and war veteran in his mid 20’s with the rest of his life ahead of him, Hawaii was looking pretty good. Waikiki Beach looked different in 1947, a time before high rise hotels and major ocean front development like we see today.
Jim’s family thought “What’s it going to take to get Jim home?” Then they came up with an idea. They attended the New York Boat Show and purchased a 1947 19’6″ Gar Wood Runabout with the hope that it would encourage Jim to return home – and it worked!
Later that year “Mom’s Mink” was delivered to Hall’s Boat Corporation on beautiful Lake George, New York for delivery to the Lundy family. The classic Gar Wood runabout remained on Lake George in the Adirondack Mountains with Jim and his family for the next 40 years. Jim commented that based on his discussions with Tony Mollica, they understand that this particular Gar Wood runabout was one of the last runabouts to leave the factory. Jim Lundy & “Mom’s Mink” relocated to Lake Keowee, South Carolina in 1984, and in 2010 a new 5200 bottom and upholstery was installed by Jan Hadley.
In 1946/47 many considered the 19’6″ Gar Wood to be the most attractive runabout under 20 feet. With the unique split-winged cutwater that blended into the rub rails, and the streamlined safety rails running along both the fore and aft decks, Gar Wood’s modern styling was evident throughout the boat.
Robert Miracle captured these great images of Jim Lundy aboard “Mom’s Mink” last weekend durng the Lake Hartwell Antique Boat Festival in South Carolina. A beautiful preserved post war Gar Wood runabout that’s been in the same family for 64 years – very cool.
But you know those “Flyboys” they are always on the move, and before we knew it Jim was heading home to Lake Keowee. And one last thing – It’s Jim Lundy’s birthday today, so let’s all Wish Jim a Big Woody Boater Happy Birthday! And thanks Jim for sharing your boat and her story with us here at Woody Boater. “Mom’s Mink” qualifies for the prestigious Woody Boater of the Month award, so congratulations on that too – your birthday gift from the folks at Woody Boater.
Images courtesy of Miracle Photography, click here to see more.
It’s great to see few shots of 19’6″ Gar Wood runabouts in the rare, never before seen Gar Wood factory photos that Matt published Wednesday on Woody Boater. Check them out if you haven’t yet.