A photograph of the pedal car first gifted to Langford resident Don Bernadin on Christmas Day in 1952. (Courtesy of Adrian D’Silva)

‘It was in rough condition’: Vintage toy car gets new life by Oak Bay man

Christmas gift from 1952 restored to original look, given to Jeneece Place

Underneath the Christmas tree at Jeneece Place, a home where families stay while their kids are being treated at Vic General Hospital, sits a toy pedal car with a lifetime of memories.

More than 65 years ago, Don Bernadin received a brand-new toy pedal car from his mother on Christmas Day 1952. The Langford resident played with the car for years, and after growing out of it, he ended up passing it down to his children.

Once his kids grew up, they passed it onto their kids and the car made its way through many relatives over the following decades.

But sooner than later, time had flown by and the car ended up back in Bernadin’s possession, collecting dust in his garage for the past 20 years.

That’s when he heard of Adrian D’Silva, an Oak Bay man restoring similar cars, selling them, and donating the cash to Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island.

READ MORE: Antique pedal car restoration rolls on for charity

ALSO READ: Refurbished antique pedal cars raise cash for Children’s Health Foundation of Vancouver Island

“It was in rough condition,” D’Silva said. “You could clearly tell there had been so many years of kids driving it around, bashing it and beating it up. The horn didn’t even work anymore.”

D’Silva and his wife, Tracey, began a full makeover on the toy car. They began by smoothing out the body with filler and sanding it down. But they came to a bump in the road when they couldn’t locate specific pieces for the pedals, originally from Tri-Ang, a British toy company that was sold in 1971.

That’s when D’Silva had an idea.

“We realized we couldn’t make any money from this repair, so we decided to donate it to Jeneece Place for the next generation,” D’Silva said.

A year after first getting their hands on the toy, the pedal car has transformed from blue to a Christmas green and is filled with nearly 100 Hot Wheels.

“The pedals don’t work, but it’s something we’re glad we could donate to the next young one to play with and enjoy.”


@iaaronguillen
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Royal BC Museum’s Woolly the Mammoth turns 40 years old

The museum is hosting a party on Jan. 26

Future space homes could be made of mushrooms

NASA explores use of fungi to build structures in space

Editorial: Have your say on changes to assisted dying law

In June of 2016 Canadians gained the right to physician assisted death — but there were caveats.

Fraser River land-claim case moves to Duncan for two weeks

Cowichan Tribe elders to be interviewed in case involving Tribes’ rights to land in Richmond

VIDEO: Drone footage shows extent of damage in Highway 4 rockslide

Tofino, Ucluelet still cut off from rest of the island, as crews work to repair roadway

BCLC opens novelty bet on Harry and Meghan moving to the west coast

Meanwhile, real estate agency points to four possible homes for the family

Canada slips in global corruption ranking in aftermath of SNC-Lavalin scandal

The country obtained a score of 77, which places it at the top in the Americas

Wuhan bans cars, Hong Kong closes schools as coronavirus spreads

Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said her government will raise its response level to emergency, highest one

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Two women struck by vehicle at Nanaimo intersection

One woman taken to hospital with possible broken bones

PHOTOS: New BC Ferries hybrid vessels arrive in Victoria’s Inner Harbour

The ferries will run two gulf island routes in upcoming months

Shawnigan group challenging assessments, claiming soil dumps have lowered values

Neighbours raise water quality, property value issues

Most Read