To Raise Grandkids, They Auctioned Their Son’s Car. The Community Had Another Idea.

"No words for the emotional impact of so much love, support, kindness."

Brent and Nicole Keryluke tragically lost their lives in a motorcycle accident in May of this year, leaving behind 3-year-old son Liam and 6-year-old daughter Arielle. Grandparents Ben and Marilyn Keryluke were given guardianship of the kids and now need to figure out ways to support them. 

Ben was semi-retired and has now gone back to work full time to support the kids, who have severe hearing impairments and will require hearing aids. In light of the circumstances, the guardians made the decision to sell Brent's 1973 Pontiac Parisienne, a car he had been restoring and planned to give to the kids when they were older.

It was a tough decision. Ben recalled his son saying, "He said he wanted a four-door, so the whole family could ride around in it."

The classic car went to auction at Electric Garage Auctions and something incredible happened that made everyone in the room emotional. 

The auctioneer explained the circumstances of how the car came to auction before starting the bidding. When the bidding commenced, the car received many bids before it hit $29,000 and was auctioned off to Rod McWilliams from Red Deer Motors.

Then McWilliams put the car back up for auction to raise more money for the family.

The bidding had already been emotional, with people tearing up and personally pledging money to help the family. The re-auction showed a tender and loving community.

In the second auction, the car was sold for $30,000 to Danny Fayad from Edmonton, and he decided to put it back on the auction block, too.

It was then sold for $20,000 to Bob Bevins from Bulldog Metals.

He didn't put the car back on auction. Instead, he gave it back to the family.

Lyndsay Payne, co-owner of EG Auctions, explained to Global News what happened. "He didn't want to be recognized for it," she remembered. "He just went up to Ben personally after the auction and said, 'You know what? I want your family to have that car so I'm giving it back to you.'"

In addition to the money raised from the car auctions, members of the community were calling in donations throughout the auctions. According to BuzzFeed, the money raised from the event was around $100,000.

"There was not a dry eye in the place," Rod Burnett, a staff member at EG Auctions said in a Facebook post.

The staff continued, "It was [Brent and Nicole's] dream to keep Brent's car for Arielle and Liam but circumstances led to the decision to sell his car. We wanted to offer our support as they prepared to send the car to a new home. And then ... the loyal EG Auctions family of buyers and sellers came together to overwhelm everyone with their generosity and compassion." 

Marilyn Keryluke wrote on Facebook, "Thank you from the Keryluke family! We were totally not prepared for what happened, and each time the car was donated back to sell and money added, was completely overwhelming and beyond anything we could imagine."

She added, "When the car was donated back to the family, there are no words for the emotional impact of so much love, support, kindness and incredible people of our city and expanding out. We picked up the car, took the kiddies on a drive and we all were smiling!"

A GoFundMe page has been started on behalf of the family to help support them. It has a goal of $100,000 and has already raised more than $81,000 in four months.

A Plus has reached out to Marilyn Keryluke for comment.

Cover image: goory / Shutterstock.com

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