Tammy and Scott Dolliver’s plan to establish a scholarship in memory of their son John has turned into something much bigger — it’s kind of gone viral.
What was going to be a small show and shine event has turned into a major two-convoy automobile show likely to involve hundreds of vehicles and people. The Dollivers are overwhelmed by the support and generosity they are receiving for the inaugural John Dolliver Memorial Truck/Car Show, to take place on Saturday, June 24, at CrossRoads Church.
John Dolliver, 18, and Ashleigh Smith, 16, of Springbrook, died last year on Canada Day in a single-vehicle collision east of Red Deer. Also in the car were two teen girls who were injured, and the driver, Dylan Beauclair, who was not injured. He is facing serious charges.
John Dolliver loved mechanics and had a dream to restore his 1993 three-quarter-ton Dodge truck. He studied mechanics at Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School and had just graduated before the crash. His family and friends took up the task of completely restoring the truck after he died.
Tammy said they did not solicit donations for the scholarship, but since word got out about the show and shine, many groups and businesses have stepped forward with help, and raffle prizes and other donations, turning it into a major event.
Some of the groups include Red Deer Cruise Night, and some Dodge Ram enthusiasts known as True North Rams. When the Dollivers tried to book CrossRoads Church, they found out it had already booked by someone else. When those people learned what the Dollivers wanted it for, they decided to reschedule so the Dollivers could have it.
Red Deer Custom Autoworks, along with their Calgary affiliate, have donated a $2,500 set of wheels and tires ($3,000 if the winner is present at the show) to be raffled.
“It’s absolutely crazy how it’s exploded,” Tammy said. “It’s just grown and grown and grown.”
A Calgary group will bring its memorial vehicle for a young man killed by a drunk driver. A woman from Cold Lake, whose daughter was killed when she was driving a motorcycle, will bring her daughter’s Dodge truck.
A Lethbridge group of Dodge Ram owners are running its first ever toy drive to benefit the Calgary Children’s Hospital that day, and after they’ve done that they will convoy to Red Deer to attend the Dolliver event.
The other convoy involves a group of 18-wheeler owners — known as Alberta Large Cars — who are meeting at 6 a.m. at Mudders Wash in Gasoline Alley. Later, with flags flying, the semis will be led by John’s truck to CrossRoads Church at 8:30 a.m. The thought of that chokes Tammy up a bit.
All funds raised by the event will go toward the scholarship. Cheques are made out directly to the Red Deer Public School scholarship fund. The scholarship will go to a Lindsay Thurber graduate on the basis of the student’s passion for mechanics and financial need.
“We’re not from here. For everybody to pitch in for such a good cause, we’re just very thankful.” The Dollivers are originally from Eastern Canada.
The John Dolliver Memorial Truck/Car Show will run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. There is no charge to attend the event except for drivers participating in the show and shine there is a $10 registration fee. Registration at 9 a.m.