Moore, Texas resident Justin Rozier never got to meet his dad. Jessica Johns, updated her husband about their adorable son only 12 hours before he passed away in their last conversation together.
After the sudden passing of Jonathan, Johns was left to attempt to put the shards of their life in Texas back together again. She had to find out how to survive emotionally and financially without her spouse, and she had to do it immediately.
She was faced with a number of decisions, one of which required her to give up the much-loved black 1999 Toyota Celica convertible that belonged to her husband. Justin, 14 years then, adored everything that belonged to his father and had a lifelong desire to learn more about his biological father.
Even though he possessed his father’s dog tags, photographs, and other cherished items, he couldn’t shake the thought that he should also have his father’s automobile. It was something that his father truly loved.
He just wanted to ride in the same automobile as his father and to occupy the same seat in the vehicle that his father cherished. At the time, Justin had only one month left to go until he turned 15, but he had already gotten his learner’s permit and was making plans to acquire his license the year after that.
The gift of his father’s automobile would be an ideal present for his coming-of-age celebration.
Despite the fact that it was very improbable for her to be successful, Johns made the decision to continue looking for the automobile so she could give it to her kid. She shared her story on social media, and news of Justin’s desire swiftly travelled to many other parts of the country.
The message made its way to Pleasant Grove, Utah, where it was quickly discovered by the community members who had been searching for the 1999 Toyota convertible.
The owner’s daughter contacted Johns and provided him with her father’s contact information, but she also told him that her father may not be really interested in selling.
Johns said that he aspirations would be dashed if she called the owner and found out that he was unwilling to sell the property. “It was a whole day before I worked up the nerve to give him a call.”
When she finally got in touch with the owner of the automobile, she explained to them why it was so vital to her to have the car back. At first reluctant, he eventually conceded and indicated that he would give it some thought.
It took him barely an hour to call Johns back and provide her the information that she required.
“I believe that your kid would get more happiness out of owning his dad’s automobile than I would.”
Even though the automobile had been located and was now prepared for sale, there was still one obstacle to overcome: obtaining the necessary finances. This is where local Kyle Fox from Pleasant Grove came in to play.
Through Fox’s charitable organization, Follow the Flag, which seeks to commemorate the lives of fallen troops and the families they leave behind, funds were gathered for the big surprise.
After acquiring the vehicle, Fox assembled a group of local technicians who offered their services for free in order to restore it to pre-owned condition and make it seem brand new.
They had to work on the ride for about a month and a half before they were able to get it to Justin in time for his 15th birthday. Fox said that “it’s what we do” and that “it’s something we do in the hopes of influencing others.”
When Justin’s mother and he found out about the surprise at his birthday celebration, they both started crying.
Naturally, the whole effort to bring the automobile to Justin wasn’t about the vehicle itself, but rather what it meant; a piece of the father he never got to know. This was the driving force behind the endeavor.
“For him, it is a connection to times gone by. It is a significant issue for me as well, “Johns stated.