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Cramer’s infamous Ford: The hard times

In America, it's possible for anyone to go from absolutely nothing to having all your dreams come true.

You can even go from living out of your car to hosting your own TV show.

That's something Cramer believes wholeheartedly. In fact, it's his personal story and one which bears retelling in celebration of Mad Money's 2000th episode in which he was presented with a classic Ford Fairmont.

As faithful Mad Money fans may already know, there was a point earlier in Cramer's life when he was so down and out, he had no choice but to live out of his car, a Ford Fairmont.

At the time he was working in Southern California as a beat reporter for the now defunct LA Herald Examiner making less than $200 a week. His meager salary required sacrifices one of which was renting an apartment in a less than desirable neighborhood.

As is sometimes the case in tough neighborhoods, Cramer was the victim of robbery.



Jim Cramer on Mad Money's 2000th episode.
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Jim Cramer on Mad Money's 2000th episode.

"It happened while I was out covering a story," Cramer said. "When I returned to my apartment there was nothing left. Nothing, Cleaned out. All I had were the clothes on my back. And my car."

As trying as the circumstances were, Cramer was not about to pack up and go home.

"Instead, I would try to bum a room here a shower there and try to save enough money to augment my wardrobe," Cramer explained. "But there were many nights when I just camped out, in the back bench of my Ford."

That when Cramer hit rock bottom.

"In the lowest of the low points I would just stay at a truck stop where the cops don' t bother you and the truckers look out for you. I had borrowed a .22 caliber pistol from a colleague. I had my old axe from when I used to camp out."

Back then, life was hard for Jim Cramer. Yet in the years that followed Cramer not only built a comfortable life for himself and his family, he achieved fame and fortune; his dreams came true.

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"That car is a testament that you can come back from anything," Cramer said. "That's what I thought about when my staff presented me with a rented Ford Fairmont in celebration of 2000th episode.

Cramer transformed his life. And he firmly believes you can do it too. In America opportunities are plentiful – you just have to be resourceful in your attempts to find them. "And you have to believe in yourself," Cramer said.

"I need you to know that lesson," he added. "Have faith in yourself and never quit. That's where it all starts."

Call Cramer: 1-800-743-CNBC

Questions for Cramer? madmoney@cnbc.com

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