This past weekend, our family had an occurrence that no family should ever have to endure. Our nephew left home under strange circumstances and basically disappeared for two days. As it turned out, our story had a happy ending and he was found, but the terror and feelings of helplessness my brother and sister-in-law endured for those 48 hours were something I can’t imagine and don’t ever want to.
My first response to them was, “Let me put the word out to the truckers. If he’s on the highway, they’ll find him for us.” And when I made that statement, I knew as well as I was standing there it was true.
People say there is no brotherhood on the road any more, and I think that’s an untrue statement. The truckers I’ve met personally and the ones we’ve grown to know through social media are some of the most caring and helpful individuals I’ve ever known. They don’t hesitate to carry a stuffed animal and take pictures all around the country for a kid who can’t travel because he has renal failure, they don’t think twice about looking goofy to other people for the love of a sick kid. It’s heartwarming to see a big ol’ trucker holding a little green dinosaur and posing in front of state signs, just so a child can live vicariously through their travels. Truckers are good like that, and I’m proud to be in cahoots with their ilk.
You can disassociate yourself from the profession in any way you’d like — I saw the same thing in the nursing field. RNs don’t hold themselves on the same level as LPNs, surgical nurses don’t feel a kinship with office nurses. Whether or not any of them realize it, they’re all still nurses, and each is held to the very same oath of “Do No Harm,” regardless of their position. You can call yourself a paid tourist, freight hauler, or rolling funwagon — it doesn’t matter, you’re still a truck driver and you’re bound to uphold the same laws as every other professional holding a CDL out there. It is the one and only thing that’s always the same, no matter what you call yourself or your attitude toward the industry.
I want to personally thank the people who cared enough to help us look for our nephew this weekend. More than 10,000 shares of his photograph went out in less than 4 hours, just from the truckers and their families. You made a difference in our lives with your compassion, just like you make a difference in the lives of every person in America, every day. Thank you for who you are, and thank you for what you do.