FAREWELL TO BIG DADDY
"The Deputy Sheriff" Adams
In Southern Cal back in the old
day's, there was a man named Roth who had some strange ways.
He did some strange things and said what he thought, but the
talent he had just could not be taught. He struggled awhile and
tried not to sink, then he came up with his trademark called
the Rat Fink. The rest is history as we all know, his fame just
continued to grow & grow. We all had a tee-shirt as i recall,
to us he was the biggest and best of them all. There was a time
he was considered an outcast, but to all us Big Daddy fans we
knew that wouldn't last. He came back strong in the early nineties,
and went on to sell millions of tee's, he once made one special
for me, it's one of a kind & means a lot to me. A blown flathead
in a shoebox, with the Rat Fink shifting the four speed box.
The cars that he built started in his mind, and as everyone knows
they're one of a kind. He used plaster and glass and a pizza
oven too, to make things that amaze me and you. I talked to Him
shortly after he moved to Manti, and he told me that was where
he would die. He put up a headstone a plywood piece, with a drawing
of the Rat Fink that say's rest in peace. He loved where he was
when he passed away, I'm sure he's smiling as he looks down today.
Goodbye Big Daddy, rest in peace.
Not long before his death, Ed
"Big Daddy" Roth spent a week at The Sheriff's shop
finishing the body and paint on "The Stealth". It would
be the last project he ever did.
Brett Harris laid on the base
coat and then Ed did the flames and other graphics. Brett then
cleared the whole car. Below are a few photos of Ed and Brett
taken during Big Daddy's stay at Fort Harris (aka Jack Harris
Paint & Body) in Utah. Aside from Roth's "Sheath"
there's a chair - a run-of-the-mill folding chair. Well, it was
just an ordinary chair until Ed used it to do the fiberglass
work on the Stealth. When the job was done he signed it and gave
it to Jack. It now sits in the shop next to Nitro Thunder.
We hope you enjoy these candid
shots of the legendary Ed "Big Daddy" Roth working
on what turned out to be his swan song.
"This is my favorite shot
of Ed Roth. He had just finished the paint on the Stealth and
was signing autographs and joking and having a good time. Look
at the expression on his face. This is how I want to remember
by "Deputy Sheriff" Keith Adams
Brett & Ed with "The
Jack Harris and Ed Roth. Ed painted
this T shirt for Jack during a car show at the Terrace Ballroom
in Salt Lake City in 1963 where Jack was displaying their A/Street
Roadster. The shirt has never been worn and Ed was surprised
and elated to see it again.
Ed Roth and his traveling
road show getting ready to leave Fort Harris.
Loading up "The
On the road back to
Manti - Utah that is.
Gary Mizer (right) worked for
Ed Roth for the last ten years or so. Going all over the country
with him. He did a lot of the art work for Ed, including a lot
of T-shirts. With him is Jack Clark, a good friend of Ed's. Jack
works for Ogden Auto Paint & Glass - a sponsor of Nitro Thunder.
Last I heard from, Gary is doing Harleys in Tenn. or Kentucky.
photos were taken the night before Ed Roth's funeral at his home
in Manti, Ut. These guys were long time friends of Ed and figured
his refrigerator could use a good old fashioned "Rat Fink"
tune-up. The tall guy in the hat is called Magoo, The guy with
the pony tail they call Coop and the younger guy with the long
hair is Jimmy C. And the one in the cowboy hat is Mitch. They
all thought this would be something Big Daddy would approve of.