In January of 1985, I owned my first car. Unlike some of my childhood friends, my first car was a hand me down from my parents. It was a 1974 Chevy Vega with a 4 cylinder engine and automatic transmission. Not the coolest car to have entered my senior year of High School. Did I mention that the radio could only tune in to AM stations? The first thing I did to make it mine was to install a high-performance tape deck - FM radio and speakers that can handle the power. The car served a duel purpose. I was also a mobile DJ, emceeing private parties and I needed a vehicle in which I could load the equipment. The Vega’s back seats went down and created a large cargo area which was perfect for my turntables, PA system, and crates of records.

Get our free mobile app

I soon made enough money from those private parties and upgraded from a van, to a pickup truck before I spotted my dream car! It was the spring of 1985 when I was looking through a car magazine called Auto Shopper when I saw a used 1985 Mustang GT 5.0 for sale at SeaBreeze Ford in Sea Girt. It was red, with grey stripes on the hood and tail. It had T-tops and a 5-speed manual transmission. This was a total upgrade from all my previous clunkers. With the help of a small loan from my dad the car was mine! Every time I drive by SeaBreeze Ford I think about that car, and my dad.

You’re probably wondering how I loaded my DJ equipment in my new Mustang. Exactly the same way I did in the Vega, the back seats also went down creating a nice cargo area. By the way, not only did I have a kick-ass stereo system in the Mustang, but now I was also driving the red car in which I wanted everyone to see. Unfortunately so did the cops. And that’s another story for another day.

Rich's Dream Mustang GT

LOOK: See the iconic cars that debuted the year you were born


WHERE DID THEY GO? Here are 50 of your favorite retail chains that no longer exist.