California Porsche Friendship and Howard Dranow

I’ve spent the last few days thinking about my great California Porsche feature trips. The times I’ve spent out there have been absolutely magic: great weather, great drives, great cars and, above all, great friends.

Friends are key to what classic Porsche, and the Classic Porsche Blog is all about. Sharing proper Porsches with friends – and I include blog followers and magazine readers in that category – is the whole point of what I do. It’s about the mission: not the money.

I was led to this train of thought by a recent video discovery. This is two Porsche friends enjoying their 914s in sunny Southern California. The sun is gorgeous and the soundtrack perfect. Good times, no doubt about it.

Behind the joyous visual lies a tinge of sadness. The driver of the camera car, and man who posted the video, is no longer with us. His name was Howard Dranow and, if the tribute thread here and the amazing Howard Dranow forum here are anything to go by, he was an inspirational character and a good Porsche buddy to many, many Porsche people. Anyone who leaves this sort of positivity behind has spent their time on Earth well.

RIP Howard. I’ll be thinking of your video next time I’m out shooting Porsches in your glorious home state.

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3 Comments

  1. says: Dave Bouzaglou

    Thanks John
    Howard was always the ultimate enthusiast. He was always there for any drive involving 914's. Did not matter when the "deck was stacked" with mega hp 6's vs his 4 cylinder; he was in the mix all the time

    He is missed

    1. says: johndglynn

      Thanks Dave.

      Don't mind admitting I was welling up a bit watching that vid and reading what so many people said about Howard. People looking in only see the cars; they never see the wonderful friends. Friends are the whole reason we are so hooked on this stuff!

      See you soon, would love to be in Cali right now.

  2. says: Mark Scheidemantel (euro911)

    I can’t believe it’s been 13 years since Howard passed away. He was a great guy, his humor, uncanny wit and generosity, made the world a better place. Even though I only met him in 2006, an immediate friendship developed, which was not uncommon for Howard – he made many people feel like that … it’s just how Howard rolled.

    We still have an [original owner] 1971 914 that Howard lead my wife & I too back in the summer of 2007. She named the car ‘HOWARD’ in his memory.

    We had the fortune of traveling with Howard on an Amtrak excursion from Los Angeles to Albuquerque, New Mexico for a 914 event (2007 Atomic Ramble) along with a couple of other friends. The whole event was a blast, and as usual, Howard was the life of the party. Howard attended many automotive events that we did as well, and it was always a pleasure to see him there.

    I remember the last time we got to spend time with Howard, it was on the 2007 Annual ‘Big Bear Run’ in June. We honked at each other as he pulled off the highway into a gas station in Running Springs on tour way home … little did we know it would be the last time.

    I still think about Howard and his family often … every time I look at his namesake: the ’71 914 in our garage.

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