As Jacquline and I prepared for our new lives as entrepreneurs, an old bread truck also awaited a new purpose. We happened upon our yet-to-be-named truck after over a month of searching. And, although it needed a good deal of love and money, it carried certain features that formed a kind of personality. After many years in service some bolts had become loose. The mirrors were broken and bent. The steering wheel was upside down and had a great deal of play. The brakes leaked. The shifter sat loosely in its gears. A few lights came on, a few remained off, some were missing altogether. It needed two batteries, and there was but one very old battery left. However, after turning the ignition, the engine gave no hesitation!
I soon found that the truck was made in the first year of a newly formed partnership between Isuzu Motors and Grumman Olson. The chassis was 100% Japanese. On the chassis sat an All-American truck body.
Grumman actually began as a company in 1930 in Pennsylvania, and by World War Two, was one of the primary manufacturers of American fighter planes. Likewise, in 1934 a Japanese motor company named Ishikawajima Motorcar Company became Isuzu Motors (renamed after the Isuzu River). During the second Great War, they were building tanks and military trucks.
The Grumman F4F-3 fight plane (Above-Left) and the Ishikawajima Type 92 Armored Car (Above-Right)
Our little truck was the product of peaceful efforts made between two companies that only 40 years prior were forced against each other. It is only fitting that we restore this truck for the purpose of joining Axis and Allies all over again in a new century! And, of course, we'll be doing this with our food!