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GM Retiree Wins Last SUV Produced At WI Plant

When the SUV line shut down Dec. 23, GM and UAW Local 95 donated the plant's last Chevy Tahoe to the United Way, which made it the top prize in a fundraising raffle.

JANESVILLE, Wis. (AP) -- The winner of the last Chevrolet Tahoe produced in Janesville is a retiree who worked 37 years at the General Motors plant that manufactured the SUV.

Gerald Kinderman of Janesville held the winning raffle ticket drawn Wednesday. Contacted at home, the 65-year-old Kinderman said he was "just super happy" and called it a "wonderful surprise."

Representatives of the GM plant and United Auto Workers Local 95 announced when the SUV line shut down Dec. 23 that they would donate the plant's last sport-utility vehicle to the United Way of Rock County, which made it the top prize in the fundraising raffle.

The black 2009 Chevy Tahoe LTZ is fully loaded and carries a sticker price of $57,745.

Kinderman said he started out on the assembly line at the GM plant and later worked as a carpenter. He retired in 2000.

The United Way reported raising $200,460 in raffling the vehicle. Tickets were $20 each, or six for $100.

Among those who bought a ticket hoping to win the SUV was Wisconsin Sen. Russ Feingold, whose grandfather bought the first truck ever made at the same plant, back in 1923.

A surviving photograph shows Max Feingold posing in front of the black truck, parked outside his Blackhawk Grocery store. A sign on top of the vehicle reads: "We were first to buy the first Chev. truck, made in Janesville."

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