Honoring the Life & Legacy of Dave Mungenast Sr.
As we celebrate the 3rd Annual Founding Father’s Sales Event, we cannot help but feel thankful for the man who started it all, Dave Mungenast Sr. Not only was Dave a dedicated businessman in the St. Louis community, but he was a dedicated family-man as well. He was vastly interested and involved in the motor vehicle industry, as well as a part of the film industry & even earned a degree in something completely unrelated to his career choice. Before that, Dave was a member of the US Army Special Forces from 1954-1957 and was even picked for the 8th Army Honor Guard. Keep reading to learn some more interesting and honorable things about Dave Mungenast Sr. you may not have known before!
Dave Mungenast Sr. was well-known in the St. Louis community for knowing his cars and motorcycles. During his time, he opened several Mungenast stores all over the St. Louis area. Some notable accomplishments when it came to the motor vehicle industry include:
- From 1961-1965, Dave Mungenast was at the leading edge of the import motorcycle entry into the US market as the manager of Bob Schultz Imported Motorcycles in St. Louis.
- In April of 1964, Dave Mungenast’s St. Louis Honda dealership is franchised by Honda Motor Company to sell Honda Automobiles.
- In March of 1965, Dave opens St. Louis Motorcycles at 6820 Gravois in St. Louis.
- In September of 1966, Dave Mungenast opens one of the first Toyota Automobile dealers in the Midwest at 5625 Gravois, St. Louis, MO.
- In April of 1986, Dave opened the 17th Acura dealership in West St. Louis County.
- In 1988, Dave was named an “Automobile Dealer of Distinction” by Sports Illustrated.
- In 1989, he was one of the few premier dealers awarded a Lexus car franchise.
- Dave established Doe Run Cycle Park, a motorcycle playland in St. François County, Mo. from 1970-1980.
- In 1991, Dave Mungenast was named the “Time Quality Dealer” of the year by Time Magazine.
- In 1998, Mungenast Collision Center, a full-service auto body shop was added to the automotive companies servicing the public.
- In 2000, Mungenast Classic Automobile and Motorcycle Museum was established at 5625 Gravois, St. Louis MO., the site of Dave’s first Toyota dealership.
- Dave was named chairman of the AIDA, the National Trade Organization of International Nameplate US Auto Dealers.
- He was also a member of the AIDA dealer delegation that traveled to Japan with the State Department to negotiate Automotive Trade issues with Japan.
Although he was better known for his involvement in the motor vehicle industry, Dave was also what we consider a local movie-star. As a bit of a daredevil, Dave was pretty comfortable on a motorcycle. In fact, he doubled as a stuntman in some notable films that are still popular today. Some movie-star fun-facts about Dave Mungenast Sr. include:
- He appeared in SEVEN major motion pictures as a stuntman.
- Dave was nominated for stuntman of the year for the motorcycle jump in “Paradise Lost” that was filmed in New Zealand, a pilot for a feature film.
- He was the stunt-double for Gene Hackman in the very popular movie, “Airport 77.”
Speaking of being a daredevil, Dave was actually MORE than comfortable on a motorcycle (or any motor vehicle for that matter). He was very well-recognized for his many accomplishments on a bike. Check out these facts highlighting his days of shredding it up on a motor vehicle:
- In 1964 & 1966 he was the overall winner of the 24-Hour Endurance Race at Riverdale Speedway in Jefferson County, MO, earning Honda its first national championship in America.
- Dave competed internationally in nine consecutive 6-day trial, off-road competitions, a world-renowned event. He earned two gold, two silver and two bronze medals.
- He was a part of the Budweiser Rocket Car team land speed record competition in 1979, helping his friend, Stan Barrett, who was the driver.
- In January of 2000, Dave was inducted into the American Motorcycle Association Hall of Fame.
- He was part of the first group of 11 US motorcyclist allowed to ride the public roads in China around Beijing.
- Dave was a winner of a gold medal at the Berkshire International Trial, a prestigious off-road motorcycle race.
Have you taken a guess as to what he studied in college? After revealing some crucial facts about Dave, we can finally reveal that he got his degree at St. Louis University in: Cartography. As interesting as studying and making maps sounds, we are SO thankful he decided to go with a different career route (get it?). Without Dave’s influence in the St. Louis community, it would not be the city it is today. Dave was recognized for his community involvement in 1987 when he was nominated to the board of the Boys’ Club of St. Louis and served for the remainder of his life, something he was very proud of.
Now that you know a little more about Dave Mungenast Sr., we want to hear YOUR stories! As our beloved leader, he was an inspiration to many who came to know him. He led an interesting life which made for some incredible experiences. Share your favorite story about Dave Mungenast Sr. for the chance to win a $100 gift card to Dave Mungenast St. Louis Honda, Mungenast Classic Automobile & Motorcycle Museum, Dave Mungenast Honda Collision Center or Dave Mungenast Motorsports. Learn more and click on Submit Your Story here!