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View Full Version : TR4/4A From a VTR post on Facebook. Herman has passed.



PeterK
12-10-2017, 10:50 AM
It's with great sadness that we report the passing of Herman van den Akker. We lost him this afternoon to pneumonia. Attendees of the last several VTR Nationals will know Herman as the developer and manufacturer of the HVDA Toyota 5 speed conversion kit. He also won the 'longest distance driven' award several times, including this year as I recall. His many friends from TRSC and across the country will certainly miss him: the party was always at his room.

https://scontent-lga3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-9/19732378_10156003369103383_5470120436689062624_n.j pg?oh=48fbd994f077c350b9f2ddd7b32080d0&oe=5A8C7EDE
(https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10156003369103383&set=pcb.2236270229732007&type=3)https://scontent-lga3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/s526x395/24991553_10156003375698383_1055608775688697418_n.j pg?oh=3a61d992bd4951f2e3167953266e9cb5&oe=5A918CD5
(https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10156003375698383&set=pcb.2236270229732007&type=3)https://scontent-lga3-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t1.0-0/s370x247/24900203_10156003382143383_565460652392090482_n.jp g?oh=118c6c4e6e9be3d485d959f66d6613f8&oe=5A946402

(https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10156003382143383&set=pcb.2236270229732007&type=3)

tinman58
12-10-2017, 11:20 AM
That is sad to hear. Herman was a great Guy. Met him a few times and talked on the phone a few times also. Very knowledgeable and just a great down to earth Guy.
He will be missed by many!

Rut
12-10-2017, 12:11 PM
Sad news indeed! I never met him, but by all accounts he was a great guy...RIP.
Rut

Gliderman8
12-10-2017, 02:35 PM
That is terrible news; so sorry to hear it. I spent much time on the phone with him during the installation of my 5-speed conversion kit. He was incredibly patient and answered any questions I had. He will be missed.

Tybalt
12-10-2017, 06:48 PM
Indeed, he will be missed. Many years ago while I on a multi-day business trip I had an open day when some equipment broke at the shop I was visiting and they were going to use that day to get it up and going again. So I gave him a call to talk with him about the conversion kit. He just told me to drive up and come see him, inviting me to his house, so off I went. We had a great time talking about Triumphs, the machine shop business and such. Very personable and friendly, had a wonder afternoon and evening with him. If you never had the chance to meet and talk with Herman, you missed an all around great guy.

ghawk16
12-10-2017, 11:07 PM
I'm truly devastated by this. I met him in February when I went to pick up my HVDA conversion at his house. The minute I walked up to the door and saw the sign that read "beer is loved in this house" I knew I was going to like this guy. He told me stories of driving down to Ventura to get beer for his tap in the garage. Painting cars in his garage in Thousand Oaks which ultimately led him to move up to Pine Mountain Club. He told me stories about all the machining equipment in his garage and the deal he got on it. He was a JOY to meet and I was looking forward to driving my Triumph when it was done to show him. His wife was great as well and his house...gorgeous. He was a true car guy when he showed me his Porsche. And with all the CA wildfires going on he was on my mind. I'm really really saddened by this news. This is a picture of him and I from earlier this year. RIP Herman. You will be missed greatly. Thoughts and prayers are with his wife, his daughter and other family.

Popeye
12-11-2017, 03:04 PM
Thank you for posting, Peter. And thanks to all for the stories. Herman van den Akker, individuals like him, together with these stories are a significant part of why we enjoy our LBCs. Thank you.

PeterK
12-11-2017, 04:26 PM
I remember that when I had questions about my first conversion, I emailed Herman for help. He didn't write back; instead he called me from his home to mine and we talked for a hour. We talked on the phone a couple of times. He was just interested and had this drive to help everyone. Always ready to help and teach.

charleyf
12-11-2017, 05:59 PM
A very sad day in the Triumph world. Herman's presence and knowledge will be missed . He has contributed greatly to the driving and enjoyment of many Triumph owners.
Best wishes to his wife Helen.
Charley

martx-5
12-12-2017, 08:12 AM
So sorry to hear this. I have Herman's conversion in my TR3, and talked to him a couple of times, during and after the installation. He was always magnanimous with his time and expertise. You will be missed...RIP

Got_All_4
12-13-2017, 01:39 AM
I too am saddened on the news. What a great guy. I met him at the Roadster Factory Summer Party I think in 1999. I had just bought my TR250 and was on a mission to find out as much info as I could about my car. He was a wealth of knowledge and like everyone has commented very personable too. I got to drive his car with the conversion (not many of us would allow a stranger to do that) and I was so intrigued with his car and particularity the color I just had to have it. Not an exact match but love how it accents the lines.

Got_All_4
12-13-2017, 01:44 AM
I too am saddened on the news. What a great guy. I met him at the Roadster Factory Summer Party I think in 1999. I had just bought my TR250 and was on a mission to find out as much info as I could about my car. He was a wealth of knowledge and like everyone has commented very personable too. I got to drive his car with the conversion (not many of us would allow a stranger to do that) and I was so intrigued with his car and particularity the color I just had to have it. Not an exact match but love how it accents the lines. We're loosing too many good old timers with a wealth of knowledge and my hope is the younger generation will step up and get interested before we loose it all.

ghawk16
12-14-2017, 12:05 PM
I too am saddened on the news. What a great guy. I met him at the Roadster Factory Summer Party I think in 1999. I had just bought my TR250 and was on a mission to find out as much info as I could about my car. He was a wealth of knowledge and like everyone has commented very personable too. I got to drive his car with the conversion (not many of us would allow a stranger to do that) and I was so intrigued with his car and particularity the color I just had to have it. Not an exact match but love how it accents the lines. We're loosing too many good old timers with a wealth of knowledge and my hope is the younger generation will step up and get interested before we loose it all.

Here are a couple pics of his TR250 you speak of which had been on so many long trips! Just happened to be sitting in the garage when I was picking up my conversion. I'm hoping as I get to learn more about this car and some of the tips and tricks I've learned from folks on here I'll be able to spread that word to potential future owners. I sure hope someone with a passion for these cars gets Herman's TR250 and his Porsche.

Gliderman8
12-14-2017, 12:21 PM
Here are a couple pics of his TR250 you speak of which had been on so many long trips! Just happened to be sitting in the garage when I was picking up my conversion. I'm hoping as I get to learn more about this car and some of the tips and tricks I've learned from folks on here I'll be able to spread that word to potential future owners. I sure hope someone with a passion for these cars gets Herman's TR250 and his Porsche.
Thanks for posting those pics... that is a beautiful car!
It made me smile when I looked at pic #2. It looks like there is a beer tap under the red "Self Serve" sign. :cheers:

charleyf
12-14-2017, 01:16 PM
. I sure hope someone with a passion for these cars gets Herman's TR250 and his Porsche.

Likely his daughter Heidi. I suspect that she fits this description.

ghawk16
12-14-2017, 01:39 PM
Thanks for posting those pics... that is a beautiful car!
It made me smile when I looked at pic #2. It looks like there is a beer tap under the red "Self Serve" sign. :cheers:

Yes, yes there is. And the fridge was pretty well stocked as well. He said he would drive to Ventura where a place would sell him kegs of his favorite beer (can't remember...but it's a popular one) for his tap...even though they weren't supposed to.

ghawk16
12-14-2017, 01:42 PM
Likely his daughter Heidi. I suspect that she fits this description.

Probably right. I think he said he had a TR3A(?) that he gave to her and he told me that guys she would meet up on dates weren't too keen of the car when she showed up in it. I told him if she showed up in a car like that for a date with me I'd be like "now this is my kind of girl"! His daughter is not too shabby looking either based on the pictures he showed me! ;)