A photo posted to Reddit of a car absolutely caked in dust after being left in a parking lot at the Denver National Airport for nearly a year has captured the internet’s interest.
Redditor u / cdedbddux shared their photo of the automobile to the r / mildlyinteresting subreddit. They earned 9,300 upvotes and 800 comments before the post was deleted by moderators.
The car, which is missing its logo plate, appears to be a black Jeep Cherokee, however the caked-on dust makes the vehicle look gray. People have taken to writing the date in the dust, and the earliest date visible in u / cdedbddux’s photo is September 17, 2021.
The Denver International Airport confirmed to Newsweek that the car was indeed parked nearby, at one of the off-airport lots run by third parties, and the spokesperson was unsure which. In comments, u / cdedbddux said that it was at the Canopy lot, which charges $ 18.95 per day for covered parking.
And this car does not appear to be the only one abandoned here — another commenter mentioned a similar car in the same lot.
“At canopy airport parking in DIA there is a white OJ style ford bronco that has been sitting since prior to the pandemic each time I go by I wonder what happened,” u / red_the_fixer wrote. In a reply, u / cdedbddux confirmed that this car was in the same lot.
Abandoning cars at airports is relatively common — and not just clunkers. In a 2020 article for HotCars.com, amid photos of high-class cars like Lamborghinis and Mercedes Benzes, writer Arun Singh Pundir says that airports are a popular spot to leave cars due to people who need to leave the country quickly due to job loss , foreign policy changes or a family emergency.
Though if the person owns the car outright, they’ll be more likely to sell it, but Pundir posits that if the car is mired in financing red tape, it’s easiest to just leave it in the parking lot of the airport they’re flying out from.
Airports sometimes auction off these cars, according to auto blog Jalopnik. In 2021, the outlet reported that the Pittsburgh International Airport put 10 cars up for auction, including a 2015 Mini Cooper Countryman and a 2002 BMW 530i. Though most cars in the auction did not come with keys, the Mini Cooper was one of the few exceptions.
The photo of the car intrigued Redditors, with some sharing their own stories of abandoned cars at airports, and others speculating on why the car might be there.
“When I lived in Boulder one of my roommates did not have a car at first. Her stepdad worked within the military contract industry. He apparently knew a guy who’d abandoned his car at the Denver airport three years earlier. He told me roommate if she went there, found it, paid for its parking, she could have it. The f ** king thing was still there! ” u / ToulouseDM wrote.
“we had one of those in our parking lot at work. after 1 year or even 2, i dont remember, we wanted to remove it and called the police and a tow truck. turned out it was a person who parked there to take a flight (my work is only like 100 steps away from airport). the person went on vacation, died in the hotel and thats pretty much the story. rip dear person. we never even heard if it was a man, woman or how old. they just said the person died. prolly to protect their privacy, “u / BasicMouse shared.
“That’s nothing, you should see what DB Cooper’s car looks like,” u / UlamIUlam joked.
Newsweek reached out to u / cdedbddux and Canopy parking for comment.