PEARLY GATES
Street Trucks|March 2021
The Ramirez Family Rolling Memorial
JOHN MATA JR

LOSING A GRANDFATHER CAN BE ONE OF THE MOST DIFFICULT THINGS TO HAPPEN IN A YOUNG BOY’S LIFE. While nothing can ever take the place of a lost loved one, caring for their prized possessions and recalling long-lasting positive memories can help ease the pain with familiarity and comfort. The special physical items left behind can live another lifetime.

We all have keepsakes that once belonged to someone we deeply cared for, and it’s interesting to think about what each particular object says about that person. Some of them are completely random trinkets that carry no real personal connection to who our loved one was, while others are more directly connected to their interests and personalities—this is the good stuff that never gets misplaced or forgotten about.

It’s safe to say that all of us here (readers included) are truck people for the most part—or, at the very least, a few car folks who can appreciate a cool pickup. Brandon Ramirez of Mesa, Arizona, might classify himself as someplace in between. The sweet ’48 Chevy seen here is his, but it wouldn’t be completely accurate to say that this make/model has always been his dream vehicle.

The truck once belonged to his grandfather. In fact, his gramps bought the truck brand new back in ’48 and remained the truck’s only owner until he passed away when Brandon was only 10 years old. The truck wasn’t willed or “assigned” to be passed on to a specific family member. At the time of his passing, Brandon’s grandfather had already sidelined the truck for a while due to a carburetor issue. In total, the old Chevy was left out in the elements for a solid 20 years before Brandon finally did something to save it from a fateful trip to the junkyard. The idea to get his grandpa’s truck back on the road was always somewhere in his mind. It was just a matter of getting some momentum behind an initial push to move in the right direction.

While Brandon did his best at first to get his grandpa’s truck the much-needed attention it deserved, the shop he entrusted to handle the job let it sit around three years without making much progress. Some days were more frustrating than others, but in the end, Brandon had to make the decision to find yet another shop that could actually devise a realistic plan of action and execute in timelier fashion.

Lucky for Brandon, he didn’t have to look too far away from home to find the help he needed to get his grandfather’s truck back on track. After an initial once-over, Jeremy Rice of Tre 5 Customs out of Peoria, Arizona, saw instantly there was still much to get done to deliver on the goals that Brandon had set for the project. With so much to do, Jeremy thought it best to start from the bottom. To give the truck a more solid, updated foundation to build on, the truck’s entire existing chassis was scrapped for a Revo frame from Roadster Shop. While the new frame is flawlessly designed as-is, it did have to be customized to fit the ’48’s factory-equipped long bed. Roadster Shop incorporates airbags and RideTech shocks into its Revo chassis setup, which is a big selling point, and Jeremy added an Accuair CVT tank as well as an e-Level air management system for optimum user friendliness.

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