I find it very sad that there people out there like this "friend" of yours. Those rare Mites will rot into the ground and then nobody will have them or the chance to restore them.
There is an old gal that lives here in Tehachapi that is sitting on a very, very original and very complete WWII jeep. It was her husband's and she refuses to let go of it. It is rotting out in a field behind her house with a 4' X 8' sheet of plywood in front of it that reads "NOT FOR SALE". What a shame