The first annual American Pride Truck Charity Event is officially a wrap after the “truck show within a truck show” concluded at GATS two weeks back. Judging took place among entered trucks in the TA Petro Truck Parking Community at GATS, and the competition was between working trucks that had been driven in for the show. (All show-registration fees went to support the St. Christopher’s Trucker’s Relief Fund.)
The big winner of the day was its own kind of wrap — “The Family Tree,” the 2018 Peterbilt 579 owned and operated by Mark and Holly O’Donnell of Tennessee. “We wanted to do a wrap,” Mark explains of the beginning inspiration for The Family Tree. “Our friend Robert Barnette suggested, ‘Why don’t you do something for the American trucking industry?'”
Over the better part of a year, the O’Donnells, who run team leased to Bennett Heavy and Specialized, underwent the painstaking process of collecting photos and obtaining permission from various individuals and entities to use them to construct their mural. It’s intended “to celebrate the history and culture of trucking,” Holly says. With the help of Zilla Wraps of Fort Worth, Texas, the result is a Thomas Hart Benton-like montage encompassing the entirety of their extended sleeper and featuring various aspects of the industry, ranging from images of the pistol-packing Idella Marie Hansen and the Omaha Stockyards to the Truckin’ Bozo himself.
The Family Tree, which also combines patriotic themes with more trucking-overt motifs, has even acquired its own Facebook page by the same name, graced by photos of trucking personalities such as Dave Nemo standing in front of the trophied rig.
The event was sponsored by RoadPro Family of Brands, National Truckin’ Magazine, Fleet Mattress, 4 State Trucks, Mother Trucker Yoga, Spartan Direct LLC and Boogey Lights.
Other winners included Scott Hampton, who bagged a first in his class, as well as James Shelley, with a first for lights.
For photos of everyone who won and placed, follow this link, courtesy of the St. Christopher fund.