Ted Youngs Celebrates Turning 90
THERE AREN’T TOO MANY 90-year great grandfathers bombing around in their own Boxster! But that’s my dad, who turned 90 on April 20, who has always professed to be a “car guy.”
Some of my earliest memories were of family outings to Mosport and Harwood Acres, a former British Commonwealth Air Training school near Nanticoke, Ontario. We’d leave home early in the morning, picnic blankets, chairs, coolers, Thermoses stowed in our Volkswagen Beetle (dad was into German engineering even back then). We’d meet up with long-time friends of my parents and spend a lovely day watching the races. For the final race of the day we would make our way around to Moss Corner. I still remember watching those Mini Minors sliding their way around the corner at top speed.
We had a short stint of owning a family cottage near Haliburton, which is when dad took up sailing. A cottage friend introduced him to it and his first boat was a 14-foot dinghy. Mom and Dad ultimately purchased a brand-new Vandestadt And McGruer 28-foot Sirius that was built in Owen Sound, specially outfitted for the Toronto Boat Show that year. For some 30 years mom and dad sailed the length and breadth of Georgian Bay and the north channel, with overnight crossings of Lake Huron to points in Michigan and one year into the waters of Lake Michigan sailing under the Mackinaw Bridge. My sisters and I, husbands, grand kids, extended family and friends spent many a wonderful weekend or extended holiday on the Bruce Peninsula and Georgian Bay aboard “Ted’s Toy 2.”
Our mom passed away suddenly in May of 2013, at the age of 83, just a short time after spending a weekend on Ted’s Toy moored in Wiarton, which was their home port. Dad kept the boat for another year but it just wasn’t the same without mom.
So, after selling the boat, he bought his first Porsche Boxster. We are sure mom was looking down from heaven, shaking her head at dad and asking, “But where do we put the groceries?!” You see, for our mom who only drove for a short period of her life, a car was a car, a means of getting from A to B. But for dad this was a dream come true.
Ted Youngs turned 90 on April 20 but has not slowed down one bit. In fact, he has sped up — regularly cruising around in his prized Porsche Boxster, volunteering and participating in many PCA UCR events including driving tours, the open house, concours, annual banquet, picnic and more.
Now he is driving his second Boxster and at the age of 90, hasn’t really slowed down much – especially in his beloved car! My sisters and I and other family have all been co-drivers accompanying dad on club driving tours, picnics and the annual banquet. He has been an active volunteer at various UCR events such as the open house, annual picnic, Club Race and he also helped proofread some articles here in Provinz.
Ted participated in the Mobil 1 Time-Speed-Distance Rally at the Porsche Parade in French Lick, Indiana in June 2015. Given Ted’s hearing impairment, he and his navigator, Mary Ellen Duncan, had to develop a novel approach to communication. Mary Ellen wrote abbreviated instructions on Post-It notes and stuck them onto Ted’s steering wheel. The notes included simple hand signals for stop, go, slow down, turn left and so on. The pair scored pretty well at the rally.
He doesn’t like to miss a club event and he received the 2015 Enthusiast Of The Year award at PCA UCR’s annual banquet. My nephew flew with dad to Atlanta where they spent an Easter weekend at the Porsche Experience Center. He also had the opportunity to travel to Stuttgart to tour the Porsche Museum and dine at Restaurant Christophorus.
He’s not really making up for lost time — those 30-plus years of sailing brought so many happy memories — but he’s realizing his long-held dream of owning a sports car, and a Porsche to boot.
Cheers, dad! Here’s to more years of driving tours! </>
Story and Photos by Debbie Sheach
Ted Youngs wishes to thank everyone who reached out to him on April 20, through E-mail and on our club’s social media channels. —Ed.