Hurricane-force winds can cause catastrophic damage to anything in its path, especially vehicles. Most people go to great lengths to protect their property in a storm. But, not this guy, who chooses to remain anonymous after leaving a Jeep on the beach during a hurricane. Fear not though, this story has a happy ending.
Jeep stranded on Myrtle Beach during Hurricane Dorian
Brittany and Nick Feliciano will think twice about giving the car keys to their cousin. That is unless it’s for an amphibious vehicle. In September of 2019, they let him borrow their red 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee.
He thought it would be a good idea to drive out to the beach at sunrise to get some video footage of the waves. The only problem, Hurricane Dorian was churning in the Atlantic Ocean. The storm had its sights set on Myrtle Beach and the South Carolina coast.
The driver claims he hit a drainage wall and got stuck in the sand. Unable to move the vehicle, he abandoned it at the shoreline and left to get help. By the time he got back to the beach, it was too late. The car was floating in the water and had become an internet sensation.
When a Jeep goes viral on social media – “Jeep Watch 2019”
It’s not every day you see a Jeep floating in the ocean during an impending hurricane. People flocked to the beach to take pictures and try to figure out what was going on with the abandoned car. The vehicle appeared to be in good condition. The only damage was a hole in the driver’s side window.
That and, of course, the fact that it was stuck in the sand. As selfies got posted to social media, the internet went wild as the #RedDorianJeep took on a life of its own. The viral sensation became the subject of countless memes and Twitter hashtags. A Facebook page was even created for the Red Dorian Jeep.
Local news outlets took notice when a video of Joshua Kipp surfaced. He stood at the water’s edge, next to the infamous stranded Jeep, playing “Amazing Grace” on his bagpipes. The vehicle became known as America’s favorite “SeaUV”.
What became of the Jeep?
Dangerous weather conditions prohibited The Myrtle Beach Police from moving the vehicle. As the Jeep sank deeper into the sand, more spectators showed up to see the infamous car. Police eventually had to close off that area of the beach to prevent people from climbing on the vehicle.
The red Jeep survived the storm and was not carried out to sea. Once the storm passed, the city sent in a backhoe to lift the vehicle and remove it from the beach. It was placed on a tow truck and carried away, ending the mystery and mania of the Myrtle Beach jeep.
Owners attempt to raise money for Hurricane Dorian victims
The infamous Jeep Grand Cherokee sustained too much water damage and was totaled. The Felicianos decided to take advantage of the publicity surrounding their destroyed vehicle.
They are planning to take a one year tour of local businesses to raise funds for the victims of Hurricane Dorian. Since the vehicle is not drivable, they will be towing it on a flatbed trailer.
The Felicianos started their fundraising campaign at a local car wash. People flocked to the vehicle to snap a picture and donate to the cause. Their next appearance will be on victory lane at the Charlotte Motor Speedway in October. They also set up a Go Fund Me page, which to date has raised more than $2,000.
All donated funds will be given to UNICEF to assist with disaster relief in The Bahamas. We’re guessing that their cousin was the first one to donate to the cause.