Frank Faraone
GM Futurliner Restoration Project
National Automotive and Truck Museum of the United States

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    The Parade of Progress (1953 version) was staffed by 50 young men. Director was John E. Ryan and operations manager was Bruce Overby. Both came from Chevrolet Division where Ryan was a zone manager and Overbey was manager of Soap Box Derby which was sponsored by Chevrolet at that time.
    Staff managers were headed by Frank Faraone, Chief Lecturer, who was responsible for training and managing the 20 lecturer-roustabouts. Vehicle manager was Bill Rodewig who had three or four mechanics to keep the Futurliners, tractor-trailers, trucks and passenger cars in running order. Jack Davenport was in charge of tent erection and layout of the display Futurliners. Joe Zell was the magician that kept the many displays and exhibits in running order. Harry Defer was our financial manager and bean-counter.
    After six-months on the road Faraone was promoted to Advanceman and Tom Pond took over a chief lecturer, assisted by Jim Morris. All three of these men went on to successful careers with GM. Faraone as director of GM's Washington Public Relations office, Pond as Director of Public Relatiions for GM Overseas and Buick Division and Morris serving in key posts with Public Relations overseas as well as Detroit.

Photographs on the following pages were provided by Frank Faraone.

1954 version of the Futurliner.
The General Motors reception center for the Parade of Progress.

John Ryan (left), the Parade's general manager, and Bruce Overby, operations director, (#1 and #2 officials of the Parade respectively). The office was used mostly, however, by the people who ran the show site day to day. On those days when I was the show site manager, I used it. The PA microphone was there, and we used it to make announcements about show times in the tent and the very important announcements about show closing in 10 minutes and, finally, lights out in five minutes. Sometimes, when we turned the lights out, it was pitch black at the show site -- dangerous for any visitors who had not left. -- Jim Tolley, Parader
Mobile office where officials meet with local dealers and dignitaries.

 

Roadside gathering was in Wilmington, DE. Bill Hamilton, Detroit coordinator for the Parade, gives last minute instructions to advanceman Frank Faraone as local assembly plant managers await start of the entry parade with at least 10 Futurliners, a number of  tractor/trailer rigs and GM's new model cars.
Debuting the new model Corvette, the Paraders fawn over the lady setting in it while the crowd watches.

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