After four years in the making, the Seneca Screaming Eagles Race Team unveiled its newest creation at the Evergreen Dairy bar this past week.
On Tuesday, May 7, the team revealed “Frankenstien,” a running race car it built from scratch.
“I’ll never forget when ‘Frankenstein’ started running for the first time,” said teacher and Screaming Eagles advisor Becky Ellis. “The car was just a rolling frame, which is basically a shell on wheels; there was nothing else, no engine, brakes, wiring, etc.”
The amount of joy Ellis got from hearing the car run for the first time was “like seeing your kid walk for the first time.”
The team came up with the idea about seven years ago. As soon as the board approved the plan a few years later, the students raised enough money to buy an exterior shell for the car.
“The kids took a blank slate and turned it into a car!” said Ellis.
Juniors and seniors who took the automotive tech class participated in the project, along with students from any grade who were willing to work on it after school.
The Screaming Eagles race club was formed by Seneca teachers and staff – Becki Ellis, Will Modica, Lynn Ritter and Jason Pitner – who now serve as advisors. “Frankenstein,” affectionately known as “Frank,” was purchased in February 2015.
“The students worked incredibly hard to get the car running,” added Seneca teacher and Screaming Eagles Advisor Lynn Ritter. “Those that came after school and those that worked on ‘Frank’ in class are students who otherwise might not find a ‘home’ at Seneca. We have given them the opportunity to contribute in a way that will not only inspire pride but will teach them valuable life skills when they graduate. From the first group who began the process to the current students, I have witnessed many determined moments.”
One of those former students is Michael Ware, class of 2016. He first started working on the car his senior year. On Tuesday, he was working his shift as a waiter at Evergreens and was able to witness the reveal for himself. He even took a minute to run out and start the car, bringing a smile to his and Ellis’ face.
“We’ve been working on it forever now,” said Ware as he sat in the car.
The crew’s goal is to take it down the track within the next year.
The crew bought the car with cash donations from local businesses and staff members. The engine and transmission were donated together by Neuberts, an auto service shop located in Tabernacle.
Donations in the form of supplies and parts, funding, or sponsorships were made by Andrew Grayson Painting, L&L Redi Mix, Lynn McDevitt, Michele Morse, Pineland Auto, Rambo Trucking, Rob Caruso, Rob Shoemaker, Roy Worell, Precision Glass Tint, A.B.A.T.E. Motorcycle Club, Certified Irrigation, Emerald Lawn Care, Alloway Associated Realtors, Evergreen Dairy Bar, Wingnuts Automotive, Pioneer Auto Body, Jimmy Jim’s Auto Sales, B&C Fabrication & Truck Repair, Eastern Radiator, Neubert’s Tire, Auto Service, & Storage, Red Star Pizza, Pinelands Collision Center, Philipps Heat Inc., Na-Var Vending Service, and Ron Francis Wiring.