Big Sam Farewell
Updated: Jul 6, 2022
We said goodbye to Big Sam, our 2001 Toyota Sequoia that served as our family vehicle for over two decades and logged over 360k miles, all by us. A friend drove him out of the driveway to begin his next adventure. I made a fun little slideshow/PowerPoint of pictures where Big Sam popped up. (I think you will have to download it and click through. Link below. I also posted it as a video, but you will have to stop it to read some of the pages, and I think the end is kind of messed up, so the last page should be a picture of Big Sam leaving.). I'm not a professional.
I don't exactly remember when we started calling the vehicle Big Sam. I got the name from the movie Gone With the Wind.
Before the war, Big Sam was a former foreman at Tara, the O'Hara's plantation. He was a big strong guy, loyal to the family, and the family thought highly of him and relied on him. When war-ravaged Tara could not support the slaves, most were released, including Big Sam. He joined the Union Army and was assigned an elevated position with a colonel. At some point, he fought with a Union soldier because the man said something offensive, so he choked him to death. Wanted for murder, he hid with other wanted criminals on the outskirts of Atlanta in "Shantytown." Ignoring warnings, Scarlett decided to drive her wagon straight through Shantytown and was attacked. Big Sam rescued her and drove her to safety.
The kids know nothing of the movie (Vic throws up in his mouth a little when he hears about the movie), so naming him was all me. It was before Caleb was born; I'm thinking somewhere around 2007. I realized personifying a vehicle might not have been the best parenting decision when at about five years old Caleb said, "What happens to Big Sam when he dies?" Uh-oh. Um... well, he's a car, so....
Obviously, it's the memories that are special, not necessarily the car, and just that consistency involved in so many of those memories. But it has been fun. Happy Trails, Big Sam!