Update: As of Oct. 14, Driggers said it is almost there. The car is finally painted, and Driggers said he has at least one more week before he can complete the job and give it to the owners.
"We got to put a rim up here and two tires on the front to get it aligned, then I've got to put the air bags in," he said.
Driggers said he did not intend to have the vehicle in his repair shop seven years, but the owners were not in a hurry. He said his goal is to get it done and that should be next week.
Original story: JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The 2001 Lexus in Ed Driggers' body shop has been there since 2004.
"We've done a lot to the car," said Driggers.
The car belonged to Ronald Cabler, who died in 2008. His parents took the car to Driggers Auto Body Inc. in late 2004," said Michael Turner, Cabler's stepfather, who added that Driggers is a family friend.
"I told the shop to take its time, but did not expect it to be seven years," said Turner.
The repairs have been paid for in full, said Turner; he gave the shop a check for $10,000, dated September 2005.
Turner and his wife have called the shop often to try and speed up the repairs, he said. "It has been hard on me, frustrating and everything, but it has been devastating to my wife," he added.
The car is almost completed - almost. So after seven years why is it still in this state?
Driggers said the family told him not to touch it. "That car sat there for five years without being touched," said Driggers. "They did not want Ronald to drive because he had problems."
But what happened after 2008 when Cabler died?
"We have to put the bumpers on the front and the back, and get it sprayed, then put the inside parts back together," he said. "We have the parts."
Driggers said a car with similar damage would normally take four to six weeks to repair, and acknowledges that he is partly responsible for how long the Lexus has been in his shop.
However, the family feels he is 100 percent responsible.
"I just want the car back (and) so does the wife; we want it finished like he promised he's going to finish it back in 2004," said Turner.
Driggers said his repair shop is known for its good work, and that the 2001 Lexus will be done soon.
"I will have it finished in four weeks. August 8, I will have it completed," he said.
Better Business Bureau records show that Driggers body shop has had one complaint in the past three years.
First Coast News