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Story & Photos By Phil Gordon Model Ciara Figueruelo
Most people take the path of least resistance because the route is much smoother. For 31-year-old Jallme Cerda of Crestview, Florida, the path was never laid out that way, but it was followed to perfection. As a young boy in Southern California, Jallme would cruise with his cousin Larry in his custom Impala. Once he turned sixteen, he received his first vehicle as a gift from his parents. They hoped that providing him with an automotive outlet would keep him out of trouble in an area known for a high crime rate. It worked like a charm and Jallme began building his passion for custom cars.
Jallme's father moved to Florida for work purposes, and after he got situated, he asked his son to come join him. After being diagnosed with diabetes, he wanted his son closer, and knew that work was better in Florida. Once in Florida, his father was able to find him a reasonably priced Chevy Impala. The Impala was in rough shape, but Jallme never complained and kept driving the Chevy to and from work. He and his father would relax on the weekend, and spend hours discussing custom automotive projects. One such project that they shared a mutual enthusiasm for was building and customizing a '63 Impala convertible; a project that became a reality when the duo found a '63 Chevy Impala for sale in North Carolina and had it shipped to them.
With the steady work load he had found in Florida, Jallme didn't have a lot of time to put into his new project, so it sat for a year. He flew to the Lowrider Super Show in Las Vegas, and within 1 moments, he developed new ideas for his own Impala. Once back home, Jallme ventured to numerous shops in the area checking prices for the precious parts he needed to perfectly customize the
Impala. Realizing the outrageous costs, he purchased a welder and with the help of his friend, Jerry Aguilar, he personally spent the next six months transforming a dream into a masterpiece.
Jallme's father was never able to see the completed transformation of the Chevy, because in 2008, he lost his battle with diabetes. While he may not have been there in his physical form, Jallme's father's spirit was working right alongside him. "My father guided me every step of the way," he says with pride. As a tribute to his father, he named his new creation "Orange Legacy." Jallme is a proud member of Unique C.C. and spends the weekends cruising in his custom rag with his wife and kids, showing them that all his hard work has paid off. "I want to thank my wife, my kids, and my I mom for allowing me the time I needed to create what my dad and I always dreamed of." ■
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