On May 8th, 2012, 13 year-old Nathan Strube of Livermore, California was killed in a tragic accident. It was a devastating loss to the Livermore community but also to the future of custom cars and hot rods as Nathan was a talented up and coming car builder and enthusiast.
To honor Nathan’s memory in the close-knit hot rod world, Nathan’s parents Sam and Katie along with their son Calvin will be talking to car builders in the Goodguys Young Guys area presented by Jet Hot/HPC at the Goodguys 26th West Coast Nationals presented by Flowmaster August 24-26 at the fairgrounds in Pleasanton in search of a young male or female car builder worthy of the 1st annual Nathan Strube Memorial Award. While the impact of Nathan’s untimely and tragic death may never be known, his spirit and memory will live on in many ways including his Memorial Award which will now be presented annually at the West Coast Nationals to a younger event participant that shared Nathan’s passion, vision and enthusiasm for hot rods and race cars
The Strube’s knew Nathan was mechanically inclined when at the age of two he could be found jacking up his pedal car, or hanging out with his dad turning wrenches in the garage. At the age of 10, Nathan learned how to machine parts on his dad’s metal lathe and in the last six months of his short life had learned how to cut rust out of his ’66 Nova project car, form metal patch panels by hand, and weld them in… all by himself.
From being able to pull his own weight in the garage, or just being an inquisitive young man devouring information on the art of building hot rods from his dad, it wasn’t a question of if Nathan was going to be an award winning hot rod and race car builder, it was a question of when.
It’s also no surprise that Nathan Strube loved to attend Goodguys events at the Pleasanton Fairgrounds - just a short fifteen minute drive from the Strube’s Livermore home. From the time he was 3 months old to the time of his tragic death, Nathan attended nearly every Goodguys car show in Pleasanton with his father Sam. The two would more often than not be found in the swap meet searching for parts for one of the many hot rods to come out of the Strube’s home garage.
Nathan wasn’t just a car nut. He was also a very good student and a kind friend to many. He loved to read – a gift he inherited from his mom.
It is the hope of the Strube family this new award will inspire younger generations of hot rodders to get excited about building and driving hot rods. “We won’t necessarily be looking for the nicest or most modified car in the show to receive the award,” said Nathan’s father Sam. “But rather a young person who possesses the same enthusiasm, talent and creativity that Nathan possessed.”
The Goodguys Young Guys area presented by Jet Hot/HPC will be located in the grass lot just north of the swap meet/midway and is open Saturday, August 25th from 7am-noon. To have your car considered for the Nathan Strube Memorial award get it out to the Young Guys area!
For a detailed look at the 26th West Coast Nationals, click here