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MERCED, Calif. (KMPH) -
Getting a pickup truck more than two decades old and covered in rust spots may not seem like much of a prize for some people, but for Jeff Selnick, it's a major deal.
The Merced man had his truck stolen last month from the Fashion Fair Mall parking lot, leaving him without a vehicle and at risk of losing his job.
"They found it. They brought it here. It's been safe. It's running. It saved my life," said Selnick who was nearly moved to tears after seeing it for the first time Monday.
"It's like getting back an old friend," he said.
Police found Selnick's truck abandoned along Highway 168. Police say the car thieves may have ditched the vehicle because it appeared to be out of gas, but it actually only needed a jump start.
Despite the truck's pockmarked exterior and missing bumper, Selnick was relieved to get the truck back.
Insurance wouldn't cover a replacement vehicle so he had to ride a bicycle to work everyday.
"A lot of people have money, they can replace the truck. They have insurance. I didn't have enough insurance. But the jobs, I only got them because I told them I had a vehicle, which I did," he said.
But the reunion between Selnick and his truck was briefly marred when he had to pay $250 to get it out of the tow yard.
Still, Selnick is just happy to have his truck back.
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