Volkswagen pays homage to late co-owner of Haines Shoe House

Melanie Schmuck admired Volkswagen cars. She owned one that you don’t see really see these days – a 1959 Karmann Ghia.

And a lot like the Karmann Ghia, you don’t observe many people like Melanie Schmuck these days, either, stated her friend, Anthony Getty.

“If you met her once, you fell in love with her,” stated Getty, a member of the Southern Pennsylvania Volkswagen Club. “She was a great lady who cared about all others before she cared about herself.”

She and her husband, Jeff, had recently bought the Haines Shoe House in Hellam Township and renovated the York County landmark. She died on February 28.

In her honor, Getty and the club organized a procession of Volkswagens to drive in the area, finishing at her funeral service on Saturday.

He wasn’t sure how many motorists would show up, but Getty stated he had to fight back tears when he got to the rally point and saw a parking lot full of Beetles, buses and like everything that ever bore the unique “VW” logo.

Volkswagens, he stated, attract people who don’t mind a little quirkiness, even if it’s in their rides or in their friends.

“Every Volkswagen owner knows all those little things that are going to happen,” Getty stated. “You’re always ready for the car to break down, and you’ll have to repair it on side of road. But you’re out for the experience, out for a drive, and there’s nothing like driving an old Volkswagen. It’s a completely different feeling, and it’s a community in itself.”

It was only fitting to honor Schmuck with a procession of her favorite, quirky vehicles.

Getty stated his friend welcomed everybody to the Haines Shoe House with a big smile and open arms and loved them.

“She was one of the few out there like that,” he stated. “You were a person and she loved you or who you are.”

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