A mention of the old Independent Truckers Association in the Lincoln Journal Star newspaper’s obituary for Donald Ray Mulder (pictured, 83 at the time of his death this past Saturday) got me searching for Mulder to determine whether he was part of the group that Overdrive founder Mike Parkhurst formed early on in the magazine’s history. And there Mulder was, quoted in a couple news stories from early in 1983, as a fuel-tax and user-fee hike was about to go into effect and Parkhurst was calling for a shutdown during a news conference in hopes of getting legislators and then-President Ronald Reagan to back off the taxes, part of a story I helped tell in our 50th-anniversary issue in 2011.
I wish I’d been in touch with Mulder at the time I was writing about Overdrive‘s history back then.
Mulder, then with the Nebraska ITA, appeared more measured than Parkhurst in his commentary with talk of the logistical realities and difficulties of any actual shutdown — bringing to my mind the picture of a pragmatic sort focused on getting things done that’s of a piece with his obituary, which first and foremost identifies him not for any past advocacy but as a business owner, simply, the “retired owner-operator of Don Mulder Trucking.”
If you knew Mulder, condolences for your loss. If you’re in the Lincoln area today, the visitation is taking place today through 9 p.m. at the Butherus, Maser & Love Funeral Home at 4040 A Street in Lincoln, Neb., with the family present from 6-8 p.m.
The funeral will be held Wednesday at 10:30 am. Rev. Darin Bentzinger officiates.