LUMBERTON — More than 80 people came together to help make a wish come true for a dying man on Thursday.
Tim Adriany has stage IV cancer and was given until the weekend to live. His neighbor James Locklear organized a social media campaign to help fulfill Adriany’s longtime dream of riding in a classic car.
Not only did Locklear get the car for the 41-year-old Adriany, he inspired dozens of Facebook users to escort him across Robeson County with a convoy of classic cars.
Adriany was able to pick from a lineup of vintage vehicles brought by regional car clubs. He eventually settled on a El Camino.
The convoy was joined by groups of motorists in Red Springs and Parkton. Many of the participants didn’t know Adriany, but felt compelled to show their support after seeing Locklear’s Facebook post.
Some came from as far away as Wilmington to help grant his wish.
“Those who think Americans don’t have love for one another should’ve been there among this diverse crowd of all races from all walks of life,” Locklear wrote in a Facebook post after the event. “I have never been involved in anything this big in my entire life.”
In addition to lifting Adriany’s spirits, the event raised more than $1,000 to help cover his medical bills.
Doctors gave the New York native two years to live when he was diagnosed with melanoma in February, but their prognosis grew bleaker as time passed. Adriany underwent chemotherapy and radiation therapy, but neither treatment was able to stave off his disease.
Adriany and his 23-year-old wife, Crystal, have an 18-month-old son. He will likely miss the birth of his second son in November. He most recently worked as a press operator at Fayetteville Publishing Co.
Spirits were high during Adriany’s multi-city cruise, making the affair seem more like a parade than a procession.
Locklear is the editor of Native Visions magazine, a Pembroke publication that focuses on the Lumbee Tribe. He said the event, which was thrown together in less than a week, was a success.
“The expression on Tim Adriany’s face when all those muscle cars rolled up in front of his home was priceless. He was like a kid in the candy store and didn’t know which way to go,” Locklear said. “Those who think Americans don’t have love for one another should’ve been there among this diverse crowd of all races from all walks of life.”