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Hot Rods Bill MaGrath - Early Ford Store - RIP

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Pete Eastwood, Oct 29, 2020.

  1. 1oldtimer
    Joined: Aug 21, 2003
    Posts: 7,757


    I didn't really know him, just talked to him (and his son) a few times and seen him at every swapmeet I was at (for years). I would spend hours in the store, even in that weird era when he was next to C.W Moss with no counters or tables...just boxes :).

    So sad, he will be GREATLY missed.
    Lil32, Stogy and Irish Mike like this.
  2. Budget36
    Joined: Nov 29, 2014
    Posts: 5,321


    Sounds like the guy, name escapes me, in Niles. I bought some stuff from him , quite a character. He told me his store front was nothing compared to what he had in warehouses

    Sorry to get the topic off track.

    My condolences to all
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  3. Fogger
    Joined: Aug 18, 2007
    Posts: 1,506


    Bill and his son are well known by all early Ford enthusiasts. I've known Bill since he had a counter next to CW in Orange. Always helpful and of course very knowledgeable. As others will say, Bill and Michael were there to assist with parts and help locating what they didn't have in stock. RIP Bill you will always be missed!!!!
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  4. rusty rocket
    Joined: Oct 30, 2011
    Posts: 4,076

    rusty rocket

    Damn it! I never met him,being from South Dakota the early ford store is a long way away but I had the privilege to visit on a trip to the gnrs. I was so impressed that I often call to get my early ford parts sent to me from them.
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  5. Nice read...sorry for the loss to all.
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  6. guy1unico
    Joined: Aug 30, 2006
    Posts: 928


    His store was so unique and full of great rides that came through the middle of his store. I really hope his son can keep the place rockin!
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  7. John Stimac
    Joined: Jan 15, 2008
    Posts: 533

    John Stimac

    Bill was a good friend and I always looked forward to visiting him and Michael. So sorry to hear this news.
    John Stimac
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  8. GZ
    Joined: Jan 2, 2007
    Posts: 1,062

    from Detroit

    Pre-48 V8- That was such a great reply and, for me, brought back so many memories of growing up in LA. When I was growing up in LA, all those names you mentioned were such familiar faces at all the events-particularly the swap meets whether it be the LA Roadster Show, Turlock, Long Beach Model T, Pomonas, Cars of the Stars, Vet's Stadium, San Diego. Rose Bowl etc etc. These were all great people and so instrumental in making this hobby what it is today. Although it is sad to see all these great people leave us, they have left behind a legacy and a wealth of knowledge-much which has been absorbed by younger generations who are still carrying the torch today. These people built the foundation that others continue to build on.

    RIP to Bill and the others we have lost. I am sure they are at the big swap meet in the sky still haggling over NOS 1932 Ford parts. Let's continue their tradition and pass it on to the next group.
    Lil32, Stogy, PRE48V-8 and 1 other person like this.
  9. jim snow
    Joined: Feb 16, 2007
    Posts: 1,160

    jim snow

    Thanks for this. Snowman
    Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  10. Stogy
    Joined: Feb 10, 2007
    Posts: 18,212


    Condolences to the Magrath Family and Friends on the passing of Bill the vintage Ford Guy by all accounts...He certainly surrounded himself with the Hobby and was quite successful at it...

    Thanks @Pete Eastwood for sharing this loss to the Community and additional thanks to those sharing their memories of this man who provided those neat parts and knowing where they go...

    Last edited: Oct 31, 2020
    Blues4U and Lil32 like this.
  11. PRE48V-8
    Joined: Sep 23, 2006
    Posts: 914

    from H.G., CA

    .....while reviewing my photo archive for images of my dad, "Fat Jack" Robinson (he passed recently on Oct. 20, 2020) I ran across these images from the Grand Natl. Roadster Show @ the Fairplex in Pomona, CA in 2013. Bill & his son Mike would always be just inside & to the right of the main entrance of the "Suede Palace" exhibition hall every year since this section was added to event about 10 years ago. It's just an example of some of the vehicles that Bill would find through his own resourceful abilities (and sometimes just because he received a 'cold call' to his store from a widow or family member who had an old pre-1948 Ford or Merc. they had no interest in). He'd bring them out to share, show & sell at this event to find them a new home where they'd be appreciated. As I find any more images of Bill, his son Mike or the Early Ford Store, I'll be sure to post them here to share with everyone....

    *Just a footnote, Bill's last name is spelled, "McGrath" (as evidenced by the Early Ford Store 'For Sale' sign in image below), not "MaGraff" as is shown at the beginning of this thread started by Pete Eastwood in memory of Bill (Many thanks for Pete's kind efforts). I'm sure Bill's family would appreciate having his last name spelling corrected in the near future...PRE48V-8\;^]

    McGrath, Bill '41 Merc. Opera Coupe 4 sale @ 64th GNRS Pomona CA 1-27-2013 email pix (1).jpg McGrath, Bill '41 Merc. Opera Coupe 4 sale @ 64th GNRS Pomona CA 1-27-2013 email pix (2).jpg
    Hamtown Al, Lil32, jim snow and 2 others like this.
  12. God Bless Bill and his family, Michael will continue on with the business I hope, Bill knew it all on old Fords and was a very special Kat as well growing up in the 50's and 60's crazy times. I'll miss shooting the breeze with him, one more time God Bless Bill and his family. JW
    Stogy and Lil32 like this.
  13. Lil32
    Joined: Apr 4, 2012
    Posts: 1,651


  14. HellsHotRods
    Joined: Jul 24, 2009
    Posts: 1,348


    I first met Bill back when he worked next to CW Moss in Orange. He and his family were like family to me. We went to a lot of swaps together and when his health wasn't the best, I was there hauling it all back to the white van at Turlock or the Chevy C20 at San Diego. Bill and I had a great friendship and mutual respect. He helped me with my first roadster 20 yrs ago. In the last 10+ years, I did all of his heavy shipping / crating for large parts sold to customers in the US and overseas. He was my friend, it's hard to lose a good friend. RIP buddy, knowing I'll help Michael and Gabrielle when they need it.

    Some pics of the store if you want an idea...
  15. Lil32
    Joined: Apr 4, 2012
    Posts: 1,651


  16. Joe Troilo
    Joined: Oct 3, 2007
    Posts: 220

    Joe Troilo

    Just received my latest parts shipment from them this week.
    RIP Bill
    Condolences to the family.
    Hamtown Al, Lil32 and Stogy like this.
  17. Sad news
    A lovely man with a fantastic shop and contribution to the hobby.

    He will be missed.

    Enjoyed visiting the Early Ford Store ok our visits from New Zealand

    RIP Bill and sincere condolences to family and friends

    Sent from my iPhone using H.A.M.B.
    Lil32, kidcampbell71 and fegsta like this.
  18. Blues4U
    Joined: Oct 1, 2015
    Posts: 5,126

    from So Cal

    2020 strikes again. This time it really hurts. God Speed Bill. Condolences to the family and close friends, of which it seems Bill had many.
    Lil32 likes this.
  19. xix32
    Joined: Jun 12, 2008
    Posts: 510


    Now that we see his name spelled correctly, was he any relation to Jack McGrath the early fifties track roadster and Indy driver ?
    Lil32 likes this.
  20. Bless his soul, spoke a couple of times on the phone, heck of a nice man, always happy to help me I felt. R.I.P. brother.
    Lil32 likes this.
  21. Bills 50
    Joined: Jul 24, 2005
    Posts: 337

    Bills 50
    from Roanoke Va

    Lil32 likes this.

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