Meeting Humphrey

Uncle Sam’s Hummers are getting long in the tooth. Back when we retired the M151 MUTT jeeps, we cabled them together and slung them out into the artillery impact areas using CH47 helicopters. There was something about the narrow wheelbase being too much of a liability to sell them to the public. It broke my heart to see all those hundreds of adorable little military vehicles transformed into so much scrap. But, now with old Hummers, Uncle Sam is following a different course.

The government sells these GI-surplus trucks without a title, as-is, and suitable for off-road use only. Many states won’t let you take the process any farther than that. However, down here in Mississippi, we take our small government seriously. It demands a little administrative effort, but these old military trucks can indeed be made street legal again.

You can find literally anything you need to resurrect a military Humvee on eBay. They are simple to service and built like, well, military trucks. Mine was desert tan and, as expected, well-used. We christened the beast Humphrey the Humvee and is now an integral part of the family.

My wife doesn’t much care for Humphrey. He’s cold in the winter, hot in the summer and loud pretty much year-round. She’s ridden in him exactly once and says never again, but Humphrey and I are thick as thieves.

I once got my tractor stuck in the lake — you’ll likely read about it someday. However, when every handy civilian vehicle gave up and quit, Humphrey waltzed in like the automotive stud he is and saved the day.