94.7 WCSX Stone Soup Project Firebird

March 25, 2014


Eleven years ago, 94.7 WCSX did a wacky radio bit challenging listeners to rebuild a junker car, solely on donations, into a classic car.  It quickly became something more than a stunt.  Metro Detroiters opened their garages and their wallets to build the first car.  Mechanics and bump-shops volunteered their time and parts. Raffle tickets were sold and 100% of the proceeds went to a local charity. Stone Soup Project™ was born and has raised over 1.2 million dollars for local charities and the cars themselves have won awards.

This year’s Stone Soup Project™ is so much more than about the car.  It’s about the great man, Gilbert Bunch of Livonia, MI, whose family donated a 1970 Pontiac, Firebird in honor of his name.

Bunch spent three decades as a building engineer.  On the weekends he spent his time helping others take care of their houses and their cars.  Two years retired, he had finally cleared his calendar to work on his pride and joy a 1970 Pontiac, Firebird. Unfortunately, he never got around to fixing the disassembled car due to sudden heart attack.  Bunch left behind his wife, Valerie; three boys, Jim, Mark and Matt; and the Firebird.  The family didn’t know what to do with the car.  Then it came to them.  Stone Soup.

Bunch loved the Stone Soup Project™ and bought tickets for the raffle every year.  He attended meetings at the mechanic shops to watch the progress of the car unfold. Bunch was a Stone Soup fan; he liked the concept, the cars and the commitment to charity.  Bunch’s stepson, Jim O’Brien says, “The best thing we could do for him, would be a rolling tribute to generosity and gearheads.

94.7 WCSX morning show co-host, Jim O’Brien, who also oversees the Stone Soup Project™ says, “You can see it in the eyes of men and women who come to work on the car.  When they hear the story for the first time some wipe away tears, others straighten up and vow to make this car something special for Gilbert’s wife and kids to be proud of.  This is what we do best in Detroit.  We build things. Stone Soup is a symbol of everything that’s right in the Motor City.  It will be an honor to turn this car into an incredible show car, while raising money for Holy Cross Children’s Services in Detroit.”

Ice Nine Group has begun to work on the Stone Soup Firebird.  One of the first things 94.7 WCSX needs to decide is the paint color!  BASF will be donating the paint.  They have selected some of their top paint colors and WCSX is asking listeners to help decide what colors to paint the car.  Log onto www.WCSX.com to vote.

Holy Cross Children’s Services will benefit from the proceeds of the Stone Soup Project™ and will be on-site selling raffle tickets at Autorama all weekend. Raffle tickets are $10 each.  You can also purchase them on-line at www.WCSX.com.

If you or your organization would like to donate time, money or resources to the Stone Soup Project™, e-mail stonesoup@wcsx.com or call WCSX at 313-298-9279.

Everyone is invited to follow the progress of the project by attending any of the WCSX Stone Soup Project™ meetings or visiting the WCSX web site at www.WCSX.com.

Stone Soup Project could not be possible without the help from Advance Auto Parts, Discount Tire, BASF, Ice Nine Group, D&S Engine, Monihan’s Towing and the many volunteers who donate their time to the project.