June 2002

DRIVER TOUCHED BY KINDNESS DURING ILLNESS

I recently had a truck leased to Corporate Moving System, a United Van Lines agent in Kent, Wash. I had been there about a year and a half when I got sick with food poisoning. While I was in the hospital, the doctor found, lodged against my back and aorta, a tumor that turned out to be cancerous.

Soon after I was diagnosed, one of the company vice presidents told me that my truck had been taken back to our yard in Kent, unloaded and secured until I could go back to work.

When I left the hospital, my company sent a limo to take me to the Seattle airport, where I flew home to meet my wife in Portland, Ore.

In December, when my wife and I went to Kent to get my belongings from my truck, my company sent all my stuff to my home and refused payment. It also refused any payment for the ride from the hospital. I had never been treated like a king like that in my life.

I sold my truck through a Volvo dealer who detailed it from one end to the other and didn’t charge me a dime. The dealer even took care of the front-end wear on the tires and rear-end shackles and spring hangers. The truck sold in one week. I can’t say enough about Volvo and the kindness it showed me.

I have since beaten cancer. My wife, who was also diagnosed with cancer, has beaten it, too. I now drive a school bus, but if I had the money left, I would have a new Volvo and go back to hauling. I’ll always remember and be thankful for the kindness shown to me during my illness.

Ron L. Christensen
Stayton, Ore.


EX-DRIVER SICK OF TRUCKERS’ COMPLAINTS

I have done my share of driving, but I am now retired and driving a four-wheeler. Having been on both sides, I get really tired of all the negative comments made by some of today’s truckers.

From reading most of your letters, one would think that truckers’ national pastime is kicking on four-wheelers. Face it, 18-wheelers do plenty of stupid stunts. If you are professionals, you should drive professionally. Excessive speeding, crowding the smaller vehicle and passing in no-pass zones are examples of things I see truckers do often. And then they have the nerve to complain about four-wheelers.

Your complaints surely offend even truck drivers, especially the good ones.

John Person
Roseau, Minn.


ADS NEED TO SHOW TRUCKERS AS PROFESSIONALS

I was watching the Discovery Channel with my family when a commercial for XM Satellite Radio came on. It featured a beautiful Peterbilt rolling down the highway smashing into musical instruments that are falling from the sky. This is not what upset me. It was the driver of the truck who infuriated me! He was a dirty, greasy looking man.

Why can’t the people making these commercials put professional men and women behind the wheel? Today, most truckers take pride in their appearance. Trucking is a very professional business, and that’s how the media should portray it.

Matt Schellie
Rogers City, Mich.


‘WHITE KNIGHT’ AIDS TRUCKER

On April 1, Clark Freight Lines driver Jack Armstrong was outside Marion, Ark., when an oncoming truck suddenly braked and pulled to the shoulder. Jack inquired over the CB whether the driver was OK. The chilling reply was, “I can’t breathe. Call for help. I think I’m having a heart attack.”

Jack immediately called his dispatcher, Gene Key, and turned his truck around while Gene called 911. Jack returned to the scene and helped the driver remain calm until an ambulance took the man to a hospital.

While another driver moved this man’s truck to a secure parking area, Jack notified the patient’s family and employer.

At a time when the only publicity that most truckers receive is bad, Jack’s actions deserve a round of applause. It is refreshing to know that there are still a few White Knights on the highways.

Joel House
West Memphis, Ark.


Have something you would like to say to Overdrive? E-mail us at ovdedtiors@eTrucker.com .

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