Verny Comes Home

Tracking down a 1940 Ford Deluxe Coupe

By Kathy Sena

In 1966, 15-year-old David Boswell Sr. had his learner’s permit and the burning desire to build a hot rod. The 1940 Ford Deluxe Coupe that he bought for $250 wasn’t much to look at. “It had no fire wall, no floorboards and four flat tires,” says Boswell Sr., of Houston. But it was all his. “During auto-mechanics class at school and on Wednesday nights, I’d be working on that car.”

“Everyone wanted to run with ‘The Boz,’” says Boswell Sr.’s son, David Boswell Jr., of San Angelo, Texas. “It was the fastest car at school, even including the new cars that the rich kids got from their parents,” adds Boswell Sr. But when the engine blew, just as he was headed to college, Boswell Sr. was forced to sell it for $200 and a Browning 12-gauge shotgun.

Life went on, but he never forgot his first car. “About 10 years ago, we tried to find it,” says Boswell Jr. Then in December 2010, an unexpected email arrived, asking “Did you own a 1940 Ford Coupe in 1968?”

The owner was researching the history of the car, which he had purchased in 1986 in New York before he moved to Florida. It had a VIN that started with “TEX,” and the rest was history. “My dad and I hopped a plane to Florida,” says Boswell Jr. “The man had redone it from the ground up. We saw it, we drove it, we dreamed of it, but it was just out of reach, halfway across the country with a large price tag, to boot. We got our fix and headed back home, wishing.”

A little more than a year later, news arrived that the price had dropped. Boswell Jr. bought the car in April 2012, naming it “Verny” in honor of his grandmother LaVerne Boswell. “My dad lives six hours away, and he didn’t get to see the car until he came here two days after my son Jaxon was born on June 12,” says Boswell Jr.

Memories of long nights with a wrench came rushing back as Boswell Sr. saw that his Deluxe Coupe was finally back “home.” “My son says he’ll never sell the car,” he says. “Verny is going to belong to Jaxon one day.”

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