Owner-operators, fleets honor veterans with patriotic rigs

Updated Nov 18, 2022

Today is Veterans Day, and while many banks, schools, government offices are closed to honor those who have served in the U.S. military, the trucking business largely keeps humming.

That doesn't mean, however, that the industry doesn't do its part to recognize veterans. Major truck stop chains are all honoring veterans with deals and meals, and organizations like the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association are using a portion of membership fees collected during its annual Truckers for Troops campaign to send care packages overseas to active-duty military and support veterans organizations on home soil.

Owner-operators and larger fleets also do their part to show their support day-in, day-out, with patriotic graphics or other themes on their trucks and trailers. Here, catch a sampling of those doing just that. For regular Overdrive readers, some of these will look familiar, but others are appearing on our pages for the first time.

Mark and Holley O'Donnell's 2018 Peterbilt 579Mark and Holley O'Donnell's "Family Tree" 2018 Peterbilt 579, which is a tribute to the couple's own family history in the U.S. military, as well as a tribute to the American trucking industry. The O'Donnells submitted this photo via Overdrive's Reader Rigs gallery.

MSR Transport patriotic rigSmall fleet MSR Transport, owned by Rob Ahlers, last year received this 2022 Western Star 5700XE, which is one of Daimler Trucks' Cleveland, North Carolina plant's Ride of Pride series of patriotically decorated rigs. See and hear more about this rig in this post and its accompanying podcast, or listen to the 2021 Veterans Day edition of Overdrive Radio just below.

Glen Horack's Marine Corp themed 2022 579Current Owner-Operator of the Year Glen Horack's 2022 Peterbilt 579 is tastefully decorated in a theme that reflects the veteran's own Marine Corps background.

Sean McEndree's Band of Brothers 2006 Peterbilt 379Another familiar truck to regular readers, the "Band of Brothers" 2006 Peterbilt 379. It was featured on Overdrive in 2016, when it was on display at the Guilty By Association Truck Show, and at the time was owned by Sean McEndree.

Ed Harwell's Service and Sacrifice 1988 Freightliner FLTThe “Service and Sacrifice” 1988 Freightliner FLT has made the truck show rounds through the years and features numerous nods to the military and veterans. When it was featured on Overdrive in 2018, it was owned by Ed Harwell.

CFI patriotic truckJoplin, Missouri-based CFI entered this patriotic rig into Overdrive sister publication CCJ's Five Flashiest Fleets contest, sponsored by 3M. Public voting for the contest is open through Nov. 18.

DVL Express patriotic truckAnother entry into CCJ's Five Flashiest Fleets contest, this truck is owned by Markham, Illinois-based DVL Express.

Leonards Express patriotic truckAnother contender in CCJ's Five Flashiest Fleets, Leonard's Express' Marine Corps-themed truck.

Pocono Coast West patriotic trucksIdaho Falls, Idaho-based Pocono Coast West entered these themed rigs in this year's CCJ contest.

Continental Express patriotic truckContinental Express had this truck supporting the Mission 22 veterans-support organization at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky, earlier this year.

CRST patriotic truckThis U.S. Marine Corps-themed rig owned by CRST was also on display at MATS this year.

WEL Companies patriotic truckWisconsin-based WEL Companies showed its U.S. Army-themed rig at MATS.

Knight Transportation patriotic truckOne of Knight Transportation's "Fleet of Heroes" trucks on display at MATS 2022.

Trucking Proz patriotic truckWisconsin-based Trucking Proz showed this "Salute to Service" Volvo at MATS 2022.

Hirschbach patriotic truckHirschbach's veteran-themed rig shown at MATS 2022.

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