Eichel Blumenstock and the Missing Car Story
In early 1963, I was a junior partner in a used car lot on West Main Street in Stamford Connecticut.
My partner was a fellow named Abe Zion. Abe was one of the best entrepreneurs I had ever met.
Every month we would drive into a different major new car company lot in White Plains New York, and Abe would buy their entire back row of trade-in cars, he would pay $50.00 for each car, running or not. My job was getting them running, getting them running and get them all back to our lot in Stamford Connecticut. Once the cars were in Stamford we would run daily specials, selling them from $99.00 to $299.00.
Abe, had a dear friend that went everywhere that Abe went, his name was Eichel Blumenstock, Eichel, was about 86 years old. Eichel was short, with thinning blond hair and he wore his pants pulled up to his chest. In his youth Eichel’s family were the Michelin tire distributors for all of Germany. When the Nazi’s arrested him, Eichel bribed a guard and fled to Palestine where he met Abe. Now in 1963, Abe and Eichel were both in America and they were inseparable.
Eichel, was a very earnest, religious and honest person, so we left him at the used car lot, to sell the cars.
After several months, I sat down to do the books, and reconcile the bank account. I immediately noticed that 10 or 12 cars were missing, so I told Abe that we were missing the cars.
Abe went to Eichel who was sitting pensively in a chair with his hands folded in his lap. He sternly said, “Eichel, where are the cars, I am told that 12 cars are missing”. “Yes Abe, Eichel said, they are on the highway.”
Now Eichel Blumenstock was a devout Jew, and he lived in an apartment in the Bronx in New York. So every Friday night Eichel would take a car off the lot in Stamford and drive it home. However a pious Jew cannot drive on Friday after sundown. So if Eichel got stuck in traffic, he would simply take the license plate off the car and put it in his jacket pocket, and he would then abandon the car. He would walk home to the Bronx even If it took him all night.So much for our used car business.