McCLELLANVILLE — When it came time for Eliot Middleton to get a driver’s license, his father, a mechanic, gave him two cars.
The catch, said Middleton, was that neither car worked. One needed an engine and the other needed a transmission, and it was up to him to make one working car out of the two.
He succeeded, and after graduating from Lincoln High School he trained to become an auto mechanic, then spent years working in or operating repair and transmission shops in the Charleston area.
These days Middleton, 38, co-owns and operates a barbeque restaurant in Awendaw, but he’s putting his automotive experience to good use. He repairs donated vehicles and gives them to people who need one through a nonprofit he established.
“This gives me a chance to work on cars again, at my own pace,” Middleton said.
At his mother’s blue cinderblock home in McClellanville, where