Man surprises grandfather with restored 1957 Chevy Bel Air for his 81st birthday

Cam Dedman spent a year returning the family car to its former glory.

— -- For more than a year, Cam Dedman had been working hard, using every free moment of his time, to finish up what he hoped would be the best 81st birthday present ever for his grandfather Fred Lamar.

Dedman told ABC News today that Lamar was his best friend and that he had a car that he loved: a 1957 Chevy Bel Air.

He said, however, that it had been sitting in Lamar's garage in Louisville, Kentucky, since 1976.

So, Dedman said he set out in September 2016 to do a "full frame-off restoration" of the car to give it "new life."

"I saved up for years to do this even sold my personal car to help fund parts for the car," he said in a Facebook post. "It all is worth it though for my Grandpa!"

On Jan. 13, with family and friends present, Dedman finally revealed to his grandfather what he'd been working on for the last 12 months.

When Lamar, who'd been wearing a blindfold, uncovered his eyes, he could barely keep his footing. For a while, he teetered, speechless, leaning against his relatives and looking in awe at the car.

"I did everything new," Dedman told Lamar. "Still got a couple of things we gotta finish up but we've been working hard on it."

"Oh, man. I love you, buddy," Lamar said.

"Happy birthday, Papa!" everyone yelled, clapping.

Dedman said today that the effort was all worth it for Lamar.

"He really deserves it," he said. "He always puts others first and I just wanted to give him something he'd enjoy."

Lamar, crying, said it was the best gift he'd ever received. That day, he said, he planned to sleep in the car.

Now, the two plan to hit the road and attend some car shows.