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#560441 - May 06th 2012 7:43 pm FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN.
Knighty Offline

Knews Anchorman

Registered: October 15th 2001 12:00 pm
Posts: 306
Loc: Saranac lake NY USA
MANY YEARS have passed since I last saw my old friend Dick Rattee.In the beginning Dick was very active in vanning and going so far as to promote a show of his own in his home town in CT. Scott Croft and spent the weekend with him and particpated in the show...The last event I saw him at was the natz in Lebanon PA....Even then he was reverting to his Indian roots and instead of van events he could be found at Pow-Wow's...Years later, as Lucy and I drove home along the Mohawk Trail in Massachusetts I spotted his van parked on the grounds. We turned around and went back and had a long visit with him....He was telling me that he had purchased some land in Colorado and just might retire there....We never saw him again, but I always would wonder what happened to him whenever we drove past the Pow Wow area....

Many vanners in New England in those days knew Dick well and his van " FOX DEN " was a constant winner in van shows....I even got into the act and routed out a set of running boards with the van name in old English script.....

Now today, we got a phone call from our son Sean and his wife Peggy that they had discovered this old show van, wanted to buy it, and asked if I knew any history on the van....They live in Muskogee OK and found the van in Texas....A peek at some online pictures showed me that this indeed was Dick's van. They purchased it on the spot and intend to bring it back to it's former glory.....

As for Dick, I have no idea if he is dead or alive, or where he might be, but if anyone out there has a contact with him I'd sure like to know.......

#560614 - May 07th 2012 5:08 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
Wizard78 Offline
Supreme Master

Registered: August 20th 2008 10:14 pm
Posts: 17160
Loc: Virginia
I'm sure the last time I saw him was the 96 Nats in Pa
Everyday above ground is a Good Day!!!
Never Stop Vannin'

Owner & Creator of Wizard's Van-In Videos
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#560649 - May 07th 2012 8:12 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
dan Offline

Registered: December 25th 2000 12:00 pm
Posts: 2699
Loc: Merrimack, NH USA
I remember Dick and his van very well. The last time I seen him he was telling me about the whole indian thing as well, dont know how to contact him now. I do remember him talking about a daughter, but thats all I know. He is one of those old vanners I think about from time to time and wonder what ever happened to them.
2000 Astro LS fully loaded

Flyin Dutchmen Vans
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#560672 - May 07th 2012 10:01 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: dan]
HighwayStar Offline

Registered: June 11th 2010 9:39 am
Posts: 12017
Loc: Burton, Ohio "Cleveland suburb...
Interesting ..hope he's alive and well...would love to see pics of his van.. smile

Proud member: Shenandoah Valley Vans

............" REALITY IS JUST AN ELABORATE ILLUSION"..................

#560866 - May 08th 2012 5:24 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
Sean_and_Peggy Offline

Registered: May 31st 2008 7:16 pm
Posts: 61
Loc: Oklahoma
We absolutely fell in love with this van when we saw it. It does need a LOT of work - but we can do it. It just needs some TLC! We will post pics soon. Sean drove it the 4 hours home and had no problems - needs a few minor adjustments. He has been working on the hinges, sliding door, engine, fiberglass patching frown and I have already started working on the pretties (curtains, interior) smile Lookin forward to getting it on the road!!!
78 Chevy (Fox Den)
72 Ford Econoline
78 Chevy (saving it- no name yet lol)

#560886 - May 08th 2012 7:20 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
Doc 2% of Canada, EH!!!! Offline

Registered: June 10th 2003 12:00 pm
Posts: 12707
Loc: Burlington, On, Canada Eh !!!!
Nice ! A priceless artifact, and a vanner who returned to his routes...A double bonus !

Knightly, download Firefox 12 at
I don't need to be honoured by Vanning, I am honoured to be Vanning !
Supporting Vanning, by going Vanning In A Van !
I hate it, when real life interferes with Vanning !
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Ontario Federation Of Truckers (Vanner's)
Ottawa Valley Vans
Founder,Mixed Bag Truckers

#561053 - May 09th 2012 12:32 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
nomercy79 Offline

Registered: November 27th 2010 8:19 pm
Posts: 89
Loc: Conn.
I was in Silver City Vans with Dick Rattee back then in the late 80s. We trucked to alot of runs together. He won alot of trophys with that van. I remember working on it with him alot. Don't know what happened to him. He has a daughter Michelle who is probably in her mid to late 30s now. Hope the resto comes out good. Would like to see it again...

#561054 - May 09th 2012 12:33 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Sean_and_Peggy]
nomercy79 Offline

Registered: November 27th 2010 8:19 pm
Posts: 89
Loc: Conn.
I have some pix of that van way back if needed...

#561056 - May 09th 2012 12:43 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: Knighty]
NateNCBV Offline


Registered: August 23rd 2005 12:00 pm
Posts: 20415
Loc: Brooklyn Park, Maryland, USA
I found a Michelle L. Ratte (Age 39) in Southington, CT doing a people search. Could be Dick's daughter.
Nate Breece
North Chesapeake Bay Vans
1994 Dodge B250 Elk Conversion (5.2L/A518)
2008 Dodge Caravan (3.8L)

#561114 - May 09th 2012 4:32 pm Re: FOUND.....A HISTORIC VAN. [Re: NateNCBV]
nomercy79 Offline

Registered: November 27th 2010 8:19 pm
Posts: 89
Loc: Conn.
That is Dicks daughter. She is on facebook under Michelle Belanger. I am not on FB so tell her i said HI...

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