'99 Cherokee Classic Now An Empty Space Beside My Heart
by Dusty Kammerer
Oh, 1999 Cherokee Classic.
I remember seeing you in January of 1998 at the Chicago Auto Show, and wow, how you moved me. Your lines so strong, your stance so impressive.
I dreamt of you for six years, and for those six years you turned my head at every sighting. Others gaze at the odd or the rare, the sleek and the fast, but I only had eyes on the strength and practicality of you, my Cherokee Classic.
It was November 21st of 2005 when my father said "Let's go for a ride and get out of the house". I was visiting home for only a few days from college. We went to a dozen lots and test drove a handful of SUVs, but none of them were you, until finally Paradise Motors. There was a midnight blue 2000 Cherokee Sport out front, so I knew this was a step in the right direction.
Then, a beautiful Forest Green 99' Cherokee Classic was rolling in from the detailing shop with 71 thousand miles under its hood, and a few hundred thousand it was ready to add.
Through three relationships, cancer, and 72 broken bones, my Jeep was the only reliable stone that didn't crumble. Starting every time, sticking through the ugliest of slush and ice, and never letting me down no matter what obstacle occurred in life.
Sadly, on Valentines Day of 2012, Jeep Cherokee Classic was stolen from me outside of my apartment around 5:20 am. No glass broken, no part shed upon the empty space she once stood so ready for me to start her up again.
I miss you, Jeep. So the sickness has returned, and I have nothing reliable, just an empty space beside my heart you once filled.
I miss the solo camping trips and the slow drives up and down the sand and lake shore. Haven't replaced you, I drive no other.Larry's Comment: Dusty, you will survive this tragedy I'm sure. But, if you need help I know a good grief counselor named "Howard Whotookamyjeep".
Great story by the way.