loving memory of Gary Lambert
very good friend Gary passed away on September 29, 2006 at the age of 58.
Gary had a huge influence on my life in so many ways and was like an
older brother to me.
Gary for over 30 years and when I first met him as a teenager, I was
going down the wrong path but after hanging around his place for a
while, I saw a different way to do things. His home life wasn’t like
most people as both of his parents were blind. He was a very devoted son
as he took care of them as he grew up. After the death of his father in
1970, his mother lived with him and later with he and his wife, until
her death. He was also a very devoted husband and stepfather to his
wife’s two sons.
racing in 1967 and has won countless races over the years. The cars that
he raced were hand built in his garage from scratch. He has also been
building engines for over 35 years and in 1988, one of his engines won a
National Hot Rod Association event at the Winternationals in Pomona. If
Gary built the engine, it meant it had plenty of power and performance.
Another thing he did was share his knowledge with others.
the founder and president of the Shifters Car Club in Banning that had
over 20 members and was established in 1968. And the club is still
functioning to this day. He graduated from Banning High School in 1966
and lived in Banning for 54 years and was a master mechanic and a
machinist. He was also a prankster, liked to tell jokes, liked to pull
jokes on you, laughed a lot, very good natured, soft spoken and fun to
be around. He will be truly missed by his family, my family and to all
the people that he came in contact with.
to tell you about some of the memories that Gary and I had over the
years. There were so many good times that I could tell story after story
but a few fond ones come to mind that I’d like to share.
met Gary when I was 15 years old. I use to ride dirt bikes back then and
a friend of mine that I use to ride with introduced us one day after
One of the
first things I noticed at his place was the 55 Chevy parked in his
driveway. This car was the “Shifters Car Club’s” racecar and a few
club members were over there working on it. Being a motorcycle guy and
working on my own bike, I could relate to all the car stuff. When it was
time to leave that day, Gary told me to come back over if I wanted to.
I took him up on that offer, which was one of the best things I could
have ever done in my life.