Friends fix up red 1983 Mustang for returning Red Bull - My29 WFTC Minneapolis-St. Paul

Friends fix up red 1983 Mustang for returning Red Bull

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Thousands of Minnesota Red bulls have returned from serving overseas in recent weeks, but one veteran got a surprise when he came home to find his friends had fixed up a 1983 Ford Mustang for him.

The story actually begins about two years ago when Lee Wickenhouser ran across a 1983 Ford Mustang in a shed, where it had been left to die. Being a car guy, he bought the car as a project -- although that quickly turned into watching the grass grow around it in his back yard.

It turns out that Wickenhouser just needed a little motivation to get started, especially since it was never really his car anyway. So, while his cousin -- Charlie Skogstad -- was completing missions in Kuwait and Iraq, Wickenhouser and his friends got to work.

Over 11 months, the group of guys gathered donated parts and money to transform the beat up car -- which didn't even have an engine -- into something special for a soldier.

Getting there wasn't easy, and it got a bit tougher when they found out Skogstad would be getting home a few weeks early. Somehow, they were able to hid it from him until the grand unveiling on Saturday.

With Skogstad on his way, his friends and the FOX 9 crew hid in the garage to wait for the signal to surprise the humble soldier after his homecoming.

The crew who rebuilt the car said it was truly a labor of love, and Wickenhouser says he's even been approached by the History Channel for a possible series about restoring cars for returning soldiers, though nothing definite has been set.

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