It takes a lot to make Jamie Griggs cry but the sight of 20 muscle cars lining his street was enough to start the waterworks.
The Hawera resident celebrated his 37th birthday this week and was stunned when the Taranaki Mustang Club turned up on his Hunter St doorstep and offered him the pick of the bunch for a ride.
Griggs has a very rare form of cancer, SCC oropharynx, which causes malignant cells to form in the throat. In Griggs it has spread to the lungs and bloodstream. Treatment hasn't been effective and his cancer is considered terminal.
"I was told I'm one in four million," he said.
"That's in New Zealand."
A ride in a Mustang was just one item on his bucket list. Griggs, who makes World War II-themed models, also wants to fly in a plane from that era, take a trip in a hot air balloon, parachute and swim with sharks.
What affected him most wasn't the chance to fulfil a life-long dream, it was the impressive show of community spirit.
A former Auckland resident, Griggs said such an experience was far less likely in the big smoke.
His partner, Donna Robins, put out a call for help the week before his birthday.
She asked on Facebook if there was a Mustang somewhere nearby that he could take a spin in, but she never expected the club to turn up with 20 cars.
Taking full advantage of the opportunity, Griggs rode in at least six.
- Taranaki Daily News
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