According to ABC News, the Papa John’s Camaro has since been recovered, though the car was one of three vehicles stolen at the celebratory cruise, which regularly sees over 40,000 classic cars and 1.5 million visitors in attendance. A black 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle was reported as stolen at the event, along with a 1966 Chevrolet Corvette.
Security footage show the thieves used a Chevrolet Silverado to steal the Camaro in the early morning hours on Sunday, which was stored in its white-and-black travel trailer. During the event, the car was displayed at a Papa John’s franchise store, also located on Woodward Ave. The event marked a rare public appearance for the ’71 Camaro, which is said to rarely leave the company’s corporate headquarters in Louisville, Kentucky.
The Associated Press reported that Schnatter was very “distraught” following the theft, and it’s easy to understand why. Schnatter originally sold the striped black-and-gold Camaro Z28 in 1983 in order to save his family’s business, and went on to use the proceeds of the sale to open his first Papa John’s pizza shop. After 26 years of searching for the car, he was famously reacquainted with the Camaro in 2009.
According to USA Today, car was found in the driveway of an abandoned home on Detroit’s West Side. A local man was about to mow a nearby lawn when he recognized the car, which was parked behind some weeds in the the abandoned driveway. The license plate had been removed and the license plate holder was bent back.
Hopefully the remaining stolen vehicles will be recovered as well.