Make-a-Wish Gifts Teen Rebuilt 1978 Ford F-150

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1978 Ford F-150 Make-a-Wish

Community bands together to make one young truck enthusiast’s dream F-150 a reality. 

Louisville, Kentucky teen Joseph McStoots bought a 1978 Ford F-150 three years ago with the goal of rebuilding the truck into his dream ride. McStoots, 18, purchased the truck for $1500 and it was in dire need of some serious work. Now, with the help the Make-a Wish Foundation, McStoots finally has the perfect Ford truck he’s always wanted.

McStoots hasn’t had the time or resources to put into his build as he’s spent a great deal of time in and out of hospitals battling a rare blood disorder. But the folks at Make-A-Wish got in contact with more than two dozen businesses to help McStoots out. Companies such as the Louisville Collision Center had 20 employees work over a thousand man-hours to tear down the truck, reassembled and build the custom F-150 over the course of three months.

1978 Ford F-150 Make-a-Wish

The truck was presented to McStoots recently at the Louisville Big Wish Gala. He was absolutely stunned and thrilled by the newly improved classic truck.

“This happening to me is probably one of the greatest moments of my life so far,” McStoots told WHAS 11. “When I was in the hospital, [I was] just looking forward to what this truck could turn out to be.”

Steve Olson was one of the crew at Louisville Collision Center that worked on the build. He told WHAS 11 how dedicated the team was to working on McStoots’ truck.

“As soon as they got behind this project, it took off,” said Olsen. “Them volunteering their time and reaching out to local vendors. I mean, we had 25 local vendors that all contributed to this. So, it was unbelievable to see everyone’s support.”

1978 Ford F-150 Make-a-Wish

The team did a beautiful job in the build, and McStoots certainly understood that it was no small feat.

“I literally drove this truck back and forth to school and it was all rusted out. It had no floorboards and all. I was just happy to drive this truck. It was my baby basically.”

1978 Ford F-150 Make-a-Wish

Congratulations to McStoots on his awesome new truck!

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S.J. Bryan is an editor with Ford Truck Enthusiasts and regular contributor to F-150 Online and Harley-Davidson Forums, among other auto sites.

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