A group of children from Myrtle beach created a hilarious spoof of television reportage on #JeepWatch2019, the saga of a red SUV that was mysteriously abandoned on a beach of an American town.
In case you’ve missed all the social media talk, here’s a quick recap:
On Thursday, September 5, South Carolina police found a red Jeep Cherokee abandoned on a beach. Whipped by waves, the SUV seemed to be in for the worst as Hurricane Dorian made its way through the coastline. Yet, as the jeep stood resiliently – come rain, wave or storm – Myrtle Beach residents became rather invested in its fate, watching and waiting to see how long it would continue to stand even as whole buildings and trees fell to the ground.
National interest in the vehicle, speculation as to how it got there, and where its owner was, were maintained through near-constant news reporting – for which NBC affiliate WMBF’s news reporter Patrick Lloyd and his photographer Kyle Thompson are to be thanked for that. In raincoats, braving winds and rain, the men valiantly continued their #JeepWatch2019 – a hashtag which soon went viral.
Of course, despite the reporter’s efforts, there wasn’t really much for him to actually report on, except give periodic updates that the car was still there, bystanders were shocked, and the storm was approaching. Lloyd still managed to stand by, eliciting laughs and winning new followers as the wave-battered jeep became the only rainbow for a country half ravaged by a fierce storm.
Over Thursday, even as the tide rose and the jeep went around 40 metres further into the sea, the waves failed to carry it off.
However, even as half the internet rooted for the jeep, one bagpipe player wasn’t too hopeful. To condone what he felt would be the imminent loss of the metal hunk, he decided to pay his last respects to the vehicle.
Only, the steadfast jeep held on.
Meanwhile, as journalists continued their investigations, the jeep’s owners were finally found.
A woman named Dee Horrell has been identified as one of the owners of the Jeep and explained that she had lent the car for a few days to a member. The said person had driven to the beach to capture a sunrise video when the car got stuck in a ditch.
“He immediately left to get help but all businesses were shut down and services inaccessible due to preparation for the storm,” Horrell wrote on a donations page for the jeep’s fans – proceeds from which the family has pledged to the victims of Hurricane Dorian. “By the time he got back the tide was coming in and it was too late. Along with the vehicle he also left behind personal items inside to get help.”
Now, the family hopes to raise $10,000. “We may have lost a vehicle but that is small in comparison to what others have lost during this storm,” Dee Horrell wrote on the fundraising page. “In honour of the red Jeep, we will be donating all funds to UNICEF to help with the disaster relief in the Bahamas.”
Meanwhile, the story of the Jeep Cherokee ended on Friday, after it was finally towed out by authorities. Well held on, buddy!