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“Now that we have a family of our own, we are excited to pass down some of those same traditions.”
Aeen and Simon and their four-year-old daughter live in Westchester, New York, with Aeen’s small collection of Mercedes-Benzes. For generations, Mercedes-Benz has been part of Aeen’s family, starting with his parents who emigrated from Iran to the United States in 1967. His mother grew up with the brand and his father had always dreamt of buying a Mercedes-Benz. During their 50 years of marriage, Aeen’s parents have owned numerous vehicles, instilling the love of Mercedes-Benz to their son, and now to his family.
Aeen and Simon met online, fell in love almost immediately, and decided to pursue parenthood after a few years together. “Aeen’s family is so close,” Simon observed, and the couple wanted to expand that closeness. A friend had recently adopted, and encouraged them to pursue adoption as well. Just a few short weeks after registering with an agency, the couple were notified they’d been chosen to parent a newborn baby girl.
Aeen and Simon drove from New York City to Cincinnati on a snowy January night four years ago to meet their just-born daughter in the hospital. To arrive to the most important event of their lives yet and to ensure a safe journey home, they decided to borrow Aeen’s father’s 550SE. Since they’ve adopted their daughter, Aeen says, “It’s brought my parents and me even closer.” Simon says, “All the anxiety and stress was worth it. I’ve never been loved like this before.”
“That moment of getting in the car, putting on our seatbelts, that’s when I am often most comfortable. That’s the beginning of almost every adventure for us.”
Lauren was born in the ‘80s in Austin, and by high school had become very studious and loved football —and vintage muscle cars. After Lauren began her gender identity transition a few years after college, she met Sam, a professional baker, online. They bonded over their love of design and a shared quirky sense of humor. On their first date at a coffeeshop in Austin, Sam brought homemade chocolate chip cookies, and an intoxicating smile. Lauren says of that first date, “It was electric.” Their second date brought fireworks, quite literally. They had each had a bumpy road to finding their authentic identity, but together, they committed to show up for each other, and live and love fully.
Lauren and Sam moved from Austin to New York City, got married in 2016, and—longing to own a car again—purchased a used 1977 D300 Mercedes-Benz. The couple bought the car from another LGBTQ+ owner, and picked it up in North Carolina. Upon spotting the car for the first time, Sam named it Maude—“She looked like a Maude!”—and the couple drove it back to New York over several days and many miles, making countless new memories. Maude lives in Brooklyn with Sam and Lauren now, and has become “a huge part” of their lives, transporting them on road trips upstate and day jaunts to the beach in the Far Rockaways. “Maude has become synonymous with us,” Lauren says. “She’s really come to life as a part of our family.” Having an older car does come with time and maintenance, the couple acknowledge, but they wouldn’t have it any other way. “Maude requires a little patience—and lot of love.”