From Russia with Love
It may sound like a James Bond movie, but some of the mystery surrounding a Russian tank lends itself to 007-type shenanigans. When Nick Mead found a Russian T-54 tank, built by the Chinese, he immediately jumped at the opportunity.
As he explained to the Daily Mail,: “I saw it advertised and I had this idea of doing a From Russia With Love experience, where people would come and drive three Russian tanks.” He couldn’t possibly know what kind of treasure that special new tank would really represent. How could he? It’s really one of those discoveries you’d expect to find in the plot of a star-studded movie.
Bringing the Russian Tank Home
Joe Hewes was the 23-year-old owner of the Russian T-54 tank, and Nick Mead immediately negotiated the barter-exchange of Abbott self-propelled gun and an army lorry, with a combined worth of nearly $39,000 USD. If Hewes had known what was hidden in the gas tank of that huge vehicle, it’s unlikely he would have allowed the tank to go for such a low price tag. After all, it really was a treasure trove.
The discovery also makes it clear that nobody really gave the tank a very careful examination after its relatively few driving miles in battle-combat use. If anyone had really scoured the tank, they would have discovered the mountain of treasure inside, even as carefully ferreted away as it was. More on that in a moment…