Anthony Velasco’s story begins like many we’ve featured before: A tale about lowriding and how a family member introduced him to the lifestyle. And while his story begins in a similar fashion, it does have a twist because he fell in love with “one” particular car. Not a particular “brand” or “model” of car, but a specific vehicle that he literally crossed paths with. That car was a 1983 Cadillac Fleetwood; we’ll get back to that shortly.
To begin, the man who introduced him to lowriding was his tio Rudy—the man whom he refers to as a father figure—who sent Anthony down a path filled with hydraulic fluid and clearcoat; a path that would ultimately teach him to not only dream but build his dream.
Looking back, Anthony recalls when his uncle went cruising in his Regal, and how he would just about beg to tag along with him. He spent any free time seeing if he could clean the car or help polish parts, but Anthony’s love for lowriding wasn’t born out of convenience. He didn’t stumble upon it whenever he walked out of the house. He put in plenty of work and ran to his uncle’s house every day after school. It was during those daily runs that Anthony constantly eyeballed and admired a 1983 Cadillac Fleetwood that he jogged by. Soon it became a fixation up to a point where Anthony admits that he even began “daydreaming about one day cruising that exact Caddy.”
As the days turned to weeks and the weeks turned to years, his love affair with that Cadillac grew and that’s when the unexpected occurred. It was the day before his 17th birthday when Anthony’s mother pulled him out of school unexpectedly. As he got into the car his mom said “We have to stop by the bank,” so they went on their way. Thinking nothing of it, the day carried on and after dinner his mom slipped him an envelope filled with cash. Upon opening it he said, “Do you need me to pay some bills?” To which she responded, “No! I need you to go buy that Cadillac you keep talking about!” And that’s exactly what he did.
Fast-forward to 2014 and Anthony decided to step up his game. He wanted to take the Fleetwood apart, so with the help of his uncle, the deed was done, and the car was ultimately revamped and reassembled just in time to make its debut at the 2017 Cadillac Fest. The three-year build is highlighted by its canary yellow paintjob infused with an intricacy of patterns, pinstriping, leafing, and ghosted shades of lime green. Inside, the Mejia brothers went to work wrapping the interior in a mixture of yellow vinyl and suede, creating an interior as equally loud as the exterior.
In its final form, the Cadillac has a lengthy list of custom work and parts, but it also came with the mandatory headaches and setbacks. With the Cadillac done, Anthony is more than happy the process is over; and can you blame him? Of course, this project could not have happened without the support of his friends and family. So he couldn’t end the story without sending a special thanks to his uncle Rudy, his fellow club members, as well as his mother, Graciela Paredes.
1983 Cadillac Fleetwood
Original 1983 GM 5.7-liter
Original pillow seats covered in yellow vinyl with suede headliner
Canary yellow with multi-colored green and gold patterns and pinstriping
Two pumps, six switches, powered by six batteries
Original 14×7 Dayton wire wheels mounted on Coker 5.20 tires