Talk about a huge haul!


For quite some time we’ve followed the YouTube channel Adventures with Purpose as the team has pulled all kinds of interesting cars from rivers and other bodies of water. Often, the aim of these events is to clean up waterways, which is a good cause, but occasionally the submerged cars yield something more sinister, like a dead body. And while some of the areas the team has visited contained several cars, their trip to the Nashville, Tennessee area is the highest yield we’ve seen yet at over 40 cars pulled from the water.

Check out these 6 classic cars found at the bottom of a river!
image credit: YouTube

That’s an insane number of vehicles to even find underwater and pulling them all out is a monumental effort. As you might imagine, they didn’t do all that work by themselves. Adventures with Purpose is a small outfit and they always get the help of local vehicle recovery companies, but this time it was different. City officials offered their resources in the effort, showing that the influence of this YouTube channel has grown significantly.

The group held a livestream event on YouTube to show off all the vehicles they pulled out of the water in Tennessee. They were all sitting in a nice row under a cover, almost like the remnants of a crashed plane collected and sorted in a hanger. Among the cars recovered was Jeep YJ, probably one of the most collectable and desirable of the bunch.

image credit: YouTube

Some people might still be excited by other cars found underwater, but even in excellent shape and not rusty, water-damaged, and with parts missing they’d still fetch incredibly little on the market. Among them is the regrettable final-generation Pontiac LeMans, which was just a badge-engineered Daewoo. There’s also a ninth-gen Ford Thunderbird and a late-model Ford Focus. At least one of the cars was only the chassis, everything else likely having deteriorated after sitting underwater for so long. Sadly, there’s no Mach 1 Mustang in the bunch, but considering the condition of these cars maybe that’s not a bad thing.

While no bodies were found in any of the vehicles, that doesn’t mean none were used to commit crimes or were crime scenes at one point. An obvious explanation for why someone would drive a car into a body of water is to commit insurance fraud or hide a vehicle police are looking for because it was used to commit a violent crime. Nashville investigators will have to sort through that now.

The team stayed in Nashville, instead of moving on to another area. They were hot on the trail of a missing person’s case involving a man named Bill Simmons, who disappeared on June 15, 2020. After some gumshoe work, they concluded that he and his car might be in the Cumberland River and they were correct. Submerged near a boat launch, the strong current made the recovery difficult, but after several hours they were able to retrieve the vehicle and the man inside. Now his family finally has some answers as well as a new set of questions.

It’s undeniably fascinating watching cars be pulled out of a body of water, similar to that fascination of seeing a barn find discovered. Just like we’ve seen in other areas this team has explored, the potential reasons for driving cars into rivers, lakes, etc. can be varied. Whatever the reason for dumping the cars, the different waterways of Nashville are now a little cleaner, thanks to Adventures with Purpose.