After Kevin and Linda Helmintoller watched the video of eight rare Corvettes falling into a sinkhole at the Corvette Museum, they jokingly say they went into denial mode.
The Florida couple told TV station WBKO that they preferred to assume someone cut the power, ran in, stole their tuned 2001 Corvette Z06, and then drove away, which would give them some hope that the car could be found. Alas, they knew deep down that this wasn't the case.
The Helmintollers donated their Mallett Hammer Corvette to the Bowling Green, Kentucky museum around Thanksgiving. They hadn't even seen in it on display yet. Now they can't see it at all, even after driving up 13 hours from Florida to visit the museum, because it's buried so deep in the sinkhole that it's not visible.
As crews begin the two-week process of pulling the cars out and starting to rebuild after the sinkhole, the pair is left feeling like they lost a family member. The worst part? Their donated Corvette was in storage until just six weeks ago until it was taken out to be on display. It's hard to think about how it probably would have dodged a bullet had it stayed there.
"People say it's just a car. They don't understand," Helmintoller told the TV station.
No — we understand, man. We understand.
Check out WBKO for the full report.