The first car John Force owned was a 1960 Ford Fairlane.
He was a 14-year-old, and the scent of gasoline was like oxygen.
The original motor was a six cylinder. He replaced it with a four-speed .350 police interceptor.
“You had your girlfriend’s picture in the car, your football helmet and your schoolbooks because that’s where you lived,” Force said.
He was the son of a truck driver, Bill, and a cook, Betty. Before the cars fully consumed him, he did the same things. They raised their three boys and one girl in a small trailer in California.
The car was Force’s way out. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.
Julian Benbow can be reached at email@example.com.