Who would have thought the 1886 invention of the automobile would change history forever? Did the invention transform our means of transportation forever? – Yes. But the impact of the vehicle is so much more than that. Since it is MLK Day, let’s consider the civil rights movement. As the Truth About Cars (TTAC) points out, vehicles were essential in the civil rights movement.
Think back to 1955, when African Americans stayed off segregated buses in Montgomery, Ala. During the year-long boycott, 325 private cars, some owned by African Americans, some by whites, some by churches, picked up people at 42 sites around the town.
Police harassed the drivers — Martin Luther King Jr. was stopped for speeding (30 in a 25-mph zone) about 30 times — but oppressing people in private cars is harder than oppressing them in public buses.
The boycott was successful, in part because of King’s fiery rhetoric, but also because of car ownership. 3
Some notable vehicles that changed America forever – the Rosa Parks Ford bus, Freedom Riders burned Greyhound Bus, Memphis Garbage Truck, Congress on Racial Equality (CORE) Ford Station Wagon, and James Earl Ray’s 1966 Ford Mustang. 4
The Lyons’ Family
By the 1960s, ARS’ founding Lyons’ family was revolutionizing the total loss claims industry for insurance companies. Robert and Robert Lyons Jr. established the first computerized total loss vehicle auction and management system known as the Auto Placement Center (APC). APC created auction, transportation, and management services for the end of life vehicles working with the property and casualty insurance industry.
After that, with the success of APC and the total loss vehicle management system, Robert Jr. was encouraged to build a new service that provided appraisers access to the auto recyclers’ parts inventories. The system was developed and was named Comsearch Inc. APC and Comsearch Inc. were both sold in 2001. Robert later repurchased Comsearch Inc. back in 2005.
Advanced Remarketing Services (ARS)
Advanced Remarketing Services (ARS) was established in 2006. ARS continues to return 80% of the proceeds to charity, which surpasses any other donation program. Most recently, ARS accomplished a major milestone – raising 150 million dollars for our charity partners. In honor of MLK and the Lyon’s pioneering – let us end with the words of Dr. Martin Luther King
Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. 6