When Dayton ISD built the new Kimmie M. Brown Elementary school, the principal, Eliz Harris, had decided upon a theme for our school…”Moving Forward”…with pedal cars and planes to be hung in the cafeteria. As the Librarian, Paula Fielder thought about our theme, she decided that the perfect thing to put in our new library would be an old pickup truck for the students to sit in to read. Not just any pickup truck would do. She was determined to find a 1940’s or 1950’s Ford pickup truck. She could see it in her mind, and it was bright red and full of kids. The principal loved the idea and they began that day to put out the word that we were looking for an old truck. One Saturday morning Liz called Paula to say that she was coming to her house to pick her up. She had something she wanted to show her. She drove me to Wilbur and Patsy Dewey’s house, and there in the backyard sat an old Ford pickup truck! It was a 1945 Ford pickup truck. Eliz had asked Wilbur if he would consider selling the truck. She told him what it was to be used for, and he said that he would not consider selling the truck, but that he would consider giving it to us.
He talked it over with Patsy, and soon the truck was being loaded up on a tow truck headed to BJ Ford in Liberty where it received about a ton of bondo, a couple of month’s worth of sanding, and a new fresh paint job in Ford red.
In July of 2004, with the new Kimmie Brown school almost finished, the day came to move the truck into the library. Wilbur and Patsy and all of their children were there that day as one of the front doors to the school was removed, the fenders on the truck were taken off, and the truck slowly pushed down the hall and into the library.
All of the people in the library that day were jubilant. The superintendents, the maintenance people, Liz, me and my family, and of course all of the Deweys. We took many pictures that day. None of the pictures of Patsy and Wilbur in the library with the truck were ever published, because true to their natures, they insisted as a part of their gift that no recognition of them would be given. Their gift was meant to be for the children of Dayton, and they did not want to receive any applause for it. This story has been used from an excerpt from Paula Fielder’s remembrance of Patsy Dewey.