George Graham

Goodbye to an Iconic Line


At least the trucks aren’t going away, but Ford’s decision to quit making sedans for the American market is a sad sign of the changing times.

When I was a little boy, my father drove a Ford. And we weren’t even in America. We lived in Jamaica.

My first memories are of a Model C, a little green car that rattled ever more loudly  as she grew older. Yes, “she,” not “it.” Nobody ever perceived that little Model C as an inanimate object. She was a member of the family.

She departed this life one day on the Spur Tree Hill road, just outside of Mandeville. If you’re Jamaican, you probably know the road. And you may remember its winding curves as it climbs the hillside. It was on one of those curves that our little green car was demolished by an oncoming truck.

Dada was broken hearted of course, but tears couldn’t bring her back. So he got himself another car. It was an American Ford – a dark-blue V8 (like the one pictured above) . And it was only a few years old. So you can imagine what an event it was when this swanky car arrived at our home in Malvern.

Agatha, our cook, was so impressed she held the door open and, with a grand gesture, proclaimed, “Pay as you enter.”

But the years took their toll, and as it logged mile after mile over those rutted back country  roads, it began to shake, rattle and roll. The district children, who could always count on a ride in it, dubbed it “Doobin,” which someone told me meant “old.”

I don’t recall how Doobin met its end. But I remember Dada switched to a Chevy after that. It was a 1938 model and this was in 1951, but it looked nice and drove just fine.

We were sharing a big, old house with relatives on Constant Spring Road at the time, and our teen-aged cousins put together and bought a Model A – or Model T (I don’t recall which it was).  It was many decades old but it was still going strong.

I’m sure you can imagine all the fun we teenagers had in that “Tin Lizzie!”

Naturally, as soon as I got asteady  job (as a reporter at The Gleaner), I bought a car. And – you guessed it – the car was a Ford. Made in England. I think it was called a Prefect.

Sadly, I overturned it trying to avoid a donkey cart on Palisadoes Road. But it wasn’t the last Ford I was to own.

Sixty years ago, when I lived in Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, I owned a ’51 Ford sedan. And today = living in Florida – I drive a 2001 Mercury Grand Marquis. In between, I have owned more than my share of Ford products.

So, I brush away a nostalgic tear as I say goodbye to Lizzie’s descendants. And I am conforted by the fact that Ford had the decency to keep the Mustang. I have fond memories of my 1969 “lime-gold” fastback model..

That baby could fly! But that’s another story.

Ford’s sad decision

Song to remember Fords by

About the author


I am a Jamaican-born writer who has lived and worked in Canada and the United States. I live in Lakeland, Florida with my wife, Sandra, our three cats and two dogs. I like to play golf and enjoy our garden, even though it's a lot of work. Since retiring from newspaper reporting I've written a few books. I also write a monthly column for