Pictured with the 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 are past owner Lawrence Godlien (left)

Old friends still cruise valley together

When Rod Kashuba bought friend Lawrence Godlien's Candy Apple Red 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1 in 1994, he had one simple goal.

When Rod Kashuba bought friend Lawrence Godlien’s Candy Apple Red 1969 Ford Mustang Mach 1  in 1994, he had one simple goal.

“All I was going to do was repaint it,” Kashuba said. “Before I knew it the motor was out, it needed a clutch, I pulled all the interior out, next thing I know I’m replacing the doors and buying a gas tank and buying inner fenders and outer fenders… it escalated until I had nothing left, and the car was completely stripped.”

This wasn’t the first time the car had undergone some extensive refitting. Godlien said he first bought it somewhere around 1985 when he saw it sitting, rusted in a farmer’s field in Cranbrook.

Godlien said the condition it was in was terrible when he took possession, but after some extensive work of his own the car was road-worthy again, and Godlien and Kashuba, friends since high-school were out cruising together.

“Do you know what a stop sign stands for?” Godlien asked, almost rhetorically.

“Spin tires on pavement,” Kashuba laughed, without missing a beat. “Needless to say, I had to put a new clutch in it.”

This particular model, the ’69 Mustang Mach 1, was only made for one year, and Kashuba thinks only about 15,000 were made that had his black and white interior. The gas mileage is terrible and Kashuba has never figured it out, not that he wants to. He did say it takes him about $10 worth of gas to make it from Invermere to Radium, with a roughly 300 hp V8 engine guzzling gas in a way most modern cars can’t (or won’t) match anymore. What makes the car especially significant to Kashuba, however, is the fact that he still gets to share it with the man he bought it from.

“Thing is, when you sell something you worked really hard on, a lot of times it’s gone, and you never see it again,” Kashuba said. “20 years later it’s still running around town, and 20 years later [Godlien] is still riding in it. Really, when we cruise in it, it’s still his.”

Both Godlien and Kashuba take the car to shows during the summer, although nothing too distant. Kashuba said he’s only put on about 10,000 miles since he restored the car, and is always a little leery of parking it in a strange town. For that reason, he’s chosen the Radium Show & Shine as his primary show of the year, and since finishing restoring the car in 1996, said he hasn’t missed a single one. Godlien joins him to take in the hundreds of classic cars and hotrods that adorn the show, and Godlien said there’s even an added bonus to attending a local show like the Show & Shine.

“It’s nice to go to that one, because it supports the valley too,” Godlien said. “That gives a lot of business for Radium.”