Rob “Rob 5” Dickey, was wounded in Afghanistan, causing him to lose his right leg below the knee. Even with an unfortunate circumstance, it did not take away the love he has for his non-running 1967 Camaro that was sitting in his garage at home.
When Rob returned from Afghanistan, the Camaro was transported to a shop to be worked on. Under some suspicious circumstances, the shop had to close. Despite the unfortunate situation, Rob was happy to see his car again. With the car back in his garage, he took advantage to continue working on it with his boys when time permitted, but life and his injury caused the time to drag on.
Warfighter Made (WFM) met Rob 5 (an inside joke of how many Robs they know) at a Good Guys show in Delmar, CA in 2013. Rob 5 stated that he has a 1967 Camaro, a piecemeal of parts, LS2 and 6L80 trans out of a Pontiac G8. When WFM met Rob 5, they were not in a position to financially take on Rob’s Camaro. However, they did stay in contact since this was a car they wanted to make it happen for him.
A few years later, Rob “5” called and said he was moving from California to Texas. With that said, he asked WFM if there was a chance that he could store his car until they were ready to start working on it. Rob and Adam from WFM made a 12-hour round trip to keep the Camaro stored alongside Adam’s house.
While the car was sitting, Rob at WFM was trying to secure a shop. In September 2015, a 4k sq. ft. facility was scored in Temecula, CA. They were fortunate to have the space to work on their projects. Soon Rob 5’s Camaro was securely tucked inside.
One of the first donations was from a Marine that had worked with Rob at WFM had reached out to him to offer to purchase something if needed. They had told the Marine that they were currently building a 1967 Camaro for a combat-wounded soldier. With little money set aside for a project, he offered to add a Speedtech Performance “Track Time Suspension” to Rob 5’s Camaro. With Speedtech’s excellent service, the order was placed and it was paid in full.
WFM had built a strong relationship with Kroyer Racing Engines, one of the premier engine builders in off-road. Kevin Kroyer told Rob from WFM, “Rob I love what you do for the vets, but my biggest fear is over-promising and under-delivering!” Kevin suggested that he would freshen up the LS2 Rob 5 supplied with his Camaro. They were getting ahead of themselves when they mentioned: “freshen up”. Once Papini’s Garage tuned it with the Street Envy Performance computer, it had equaled 438 HP and 487 lbs. ft torque in just the wheels!
Customizing did not stop there. The HRE Wheels team stopped by the WFM shop and had a 3D scan of each wheel well. The custom wheels were built specifically for the Camaro. Each wheel was wrapped in Micheline rubber and BAER 6 piston calipers at each corner of the car. There is no question about this car’s ability to stop on a dime.
It was finally starting to come together when it was time for body work and paint. The exterior work was expertly handled by Jim, the owner of Lakeside Speed & Shine in Lake Havasu, AZ. He had given the car to a whole new look with a fresh coat of black with added burgundy colored stripes. Soon enough, they tied it all together with the added chrome around the grill and windows to make the car stand out.
The owner of Street Envy Performance, Christian, was as dedicated to the build as WFM was. TMI Products donated their custom interior kit for this Camaro. Christian and his father-in-law came to the shop and did the installation, along with a ton of other work that needed to be done. A Status steering wheel and harnesses were then added. Behind the new wheel was a full complement of AutoMeter Carbon Fiber series gauges in an AutoMeter “Direct Fit” insert.
In December 2020, WFM had its 6th Annual Open House/Car Show with roughly 200 people in attendance. During the show, they had kept Rob 5’s Camaro under a cover in the center of their shop. Towards the end of the event, they had asked everyone to head outside as they lowered the bay door. Rob at WFM gave a speech about Rob 5 and how long it took them to build the vehicle. On a keyword, their shop foreman, a Marine combat vet Danny Novoa had started up the Camaro and revved it up a few times to get the crowd excited. Not long after; the door slowly came up. Once the door was clear, Danny pulled the car out to a cheering crowd. He parked the car in a way so Rob 5 and the crowd could admire all the hard work that the team had put into this restomod. Furthermore, Rob at WFM had listed off all the supporting partners and sponsors that made this dream come true.
As with most of their recipients, Rob 5 was at a loss for words. He kept repeating “wow” as they walked around the vehicle. He pointed out each detail that only a true gearhead would notice and appreciate. When the event ended, and the crowd died down, Rob 5 and Rob at WFM jumped into the newly built Camaro. He finally got a chance to drive his car for the first time in over ten years. One of many direct quotes from Rob 5 is, “I love the gauges!”
Now, Rob 5 lives in San Antonio, Texas, and WFM had the car shipped to him. The Camaro lives a pampered life, sitting beside his late model Camaro ZL1. When the urge arises, it gets taken out for local car meets, and shows, along with some autocross events.