Jimmy Ardis, among several other drivers and owner-operators, was a recipient of one of the inaugural Citizen Driver Awards from TravelCenters of America. What you see above is one of the results — a renaming of one of TA Petro’s stops around the country after Ardis (regular readers of course may well know him better by his CB handle and longtime nickname, Monkey Gouger).
It’s something to see his name up on the building, he says. The location, off I-95 at South Carolina 261, or the Paxville Highway, was formerly Jerry’s Truck Stop, whose owner was a personal friend of Ardis who’d helped him out when he was getting started as an owner-operator. After his passing several years back, TA took over operation of the stop, Ardis says.The owner-operator’s history there extends all the way back into his childhood. Ardis well recalls when “we would sit on the side of the interstate when trucks were coming up the ramp” on long-ago afternoons, he says. “We’d sit there and make them blow their horns.”
May 10 is the official dedication day for the Jimmy Ardis Travel Center. Congrats, Monkey Gouger. Well-deserved.