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Sunday, Apr 22, 2018
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Donate food, take photo with hearse for Halloween

SOUTH TAMPA – A hearse with a history will be part of a Halloween food drive to benefit Metropolitan Ministries.

A 1956 Cadillac Superior, which is being restored, will be available for photos from 3 to 6 p.m. Thursday in the parking lot of Sweetbay Supermarkets, 4317 Gandy Blvd.

The 25-foot-long hearse is owned by Chuck Segal of Segal Funeral Home, who had it brought to Tampa from Colorado. The vehicle was used in at least two record album covers by groups called The Monocles and the Ghastly Ones, Segal said. It also was once owned by Norman Cabrera, a special effects makeup artist in Hollywood.

“I collect antique cars and have an interest in the history of my profession,” Segal said. “I found it online, bought it sight unseen and had it trucked down.”

When fully restored, it will be available for services, upon request, he said, adding it has always been called “The Beast.”

He said, “Being that it will be used for a funeral home, we will call it ‘The Beauty They Call The Beast.’ ”

For Halloween, he plans to set up a coffin to collect canned goods for Metropolitan Ministries and have staff members in costumes with treats. Cash donations also will be accepted.

The staff will be dressed for “eccentric fun, like the Addams Family is,” Segal said. “Nothing morbid, no bodies, no blood.”

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