I’m just now coming down from my Joplin high. The Guilty by Association show was incredible, but the Special Olympics Convoy on Saturday night was by far one of the coolest things we’ve ever done.
I still don’t have a complete set of numbers from 4 State, because I’m sure it’s going to take them all week to count the piles of money, but well over 200 trucks – a record breaking number – participated.
First spot in the line auctioned for a little over $7000, and before the charity auction was over, somewhere close to $50,000 had been raised for Special Olympics. People were throwing $100 bills around like gum wrappers. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – truckers are generous when it comes to charity. Extremely generous.
The people of Joplin lined the streets and welcomed the truckers like they were superstars. I felt like we had fallen off the planet and into an alternate universe when George stepped out of the truck and was immediately greeted with a handshake and a “thank you” from one of the spectators. Joplin gets it. They understand those trucks represent their consumer goods and they appreciate it.
We let little kids up in the truck and the air horn got pulled more than it ever has. There were young people, old people, service people and people who had just happened to get stuck in the traffic and couldn’t get away. Everyone loved the trucks, everyone was respectful and it was just a beautiful experience.
Chicken lights as far as the eye could see:
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Hands down the best $100 we’ve spent in a long time. Next year, I’d like to see 300 trucks and some mainstream news agencies. The one thing the city of Joplin didn’t send out was their local news. All that hullaballoo and no press – other than trucking magazines. No one wants to see us at our best, doing good things. If it doesn’t involve fiery crashes they can play on a loop for click bait, they want none of it. Shame on you, mainstream news, and your loss, because it was one of the coolest things I’ve ever seen.
Did I mention that yet?
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