Special Olympics convoy: Joplin shatters truck-number record, raises $100,000-plus

| September 26, 2016

The Guilty by Association Truck Show ended Saturday night with a convoy from 4 State Trucks’ location to downtown Joplin, Mo., where local law enforcement closed off Main Street for blocks North and South of 7th Avenue. The convoy, with proceeds benefiting the Special Olympics, broke the Joplin convoy’s own previous record, set last year, for number of participating trucks. This year, 403 participated, many of them brought by owner-operators and fleets from the GBATS show, where well more than 500 trucks were shown this year.

As of this morning, the “total raised (so far) for Special Olympics is $102,000!” says 4 States’ Bryan Martin, with money continuing to come in from convoy participants and others. He guesses that total may rise by a couple thousand in the end. “Overall, a great weekend for all.”

Much of that total came from convoy participants themselves. Front spots were auctioned, with the first couple going to CEI for $7,000 and $3,000 donated to Special Olympics, respectively.

bryan-martin-hands-down-trophyThe truck-show awards for Best of Show bobtail and combo were determined by the participants in the show, and both went to trucks that will be familiar to regular Overdrive readers.

The combo win was hauled in by Virginia-based Mike Manuel and his autism awareness truck, a 2015 Peterbilt 389 and Mac curtainside combo. It’s pictured here at the Great American Trucking Show, where it scored the National Championship win in the Builder’s Combo class:

mike-manuel

Kyle Cousins’ Fleenor Bros. “Ace in the Hole” 2008 Kenworth took the participants’ choice Best of Show for bobtail at GBATS. Among enhancements made since the show where it debuted to Overdrive‘s audience this past July include the pinstriping and Fleenor logo’s ghosting on the deckplate. Both are shown below just after a light shower that cooled off the show lot at GBATS Saturday:

fleenor-bros-2008-kw-w900-ace-in-the-hole

fleenor-bros-2008-kw-deckplate fleenor-logo-ghosting

Catch a video run through the “Ace in the Hole” via this link to prior coverage.

bryan-martin-tony-justice

4 State Trucks’ Bryan Martin (right) just after the introduction of the 2016 Larry H. Martin award recipient, trucker and singer-songwriter Tony Justice (left).

The annual Larry H. Martin Award, too, was delivered at the show in advance of the Friday-night on-site truck and tractor pulls. Annually, 4 State Trucks gives out the award to a trucker who goes above and beyond. It’s intended, too, to honor the memory of the truck shop’s founder. This year, as Brice Martin reveals in audio of the presentation above and at bottom, the award went to Everhart Transportation driver and singer-songwriter Tony Justice.

Related

Live from GATS: 'Stars, Stripes and White Lines' -- hear Tony Justice and his band

Live from GATS: ‘Stars, Stripes and White Lines’ — hear Tony Justice and his band

Live from the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center in Dallas, trucker and singer-songwriter Tony Justice delivered this amazing performance to drivers attending GATS. Hear the ...

A surprise to the trucker, Justice said, the award is intended to recognize “those truckers that take trucking seriously,” said radio host Dave Amick of Norfolk, Neb., in his introduction of the award itself.

For recipients, Amick added, trucking is “more than a life, it’s more than a passion, it’s who they are to the core.”

The award is “something special,” no doubt, Justice said.

Justice himself had a surprise for the Martin family during his performance downtown at the end of the convoy the next night. One of his sponsors, the DPF Regeneration company, added $5,000 to the donation totals for Special Olympics.

Justice himself had a surprise for the Martin family during his performance downtown at the end of the convoy the next night. One of his sponsors, the DPF Regeneration company, added $5,000 to the donation totals for Special Olympics.

Big comeback for this cabover, one of 550-plus trucking stories at Guilty by Association

A tale of triumph from near-ruin September 10, 1987 in Pratt, Kansas, for this 1976 Kelty Farms International Transtar. And: More from Joplin, Mo.

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