'Plain Jane' 1995 Peterbilt 379 a company driver's dream ride

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Hutchinson, Kansas-based James Frenya has been trucking for more than six years, but he has spent his whole life around the business.

Frenya's dad was a 45-year trucking veteran before his retirement last year, and his brother has been in the business for 15 years. "I grew up around it," he said. "I've been around trucks since I was just a baby and it just gets in your blood."

Frenya was at the 2023 Guilty By Association Truck Show last Fall, showing the 1995 Peterbilt 379 that he drives for Fifth Wheel Yard & Truck Service, also based in Hutchinson. Frenya's a company driver for Fifth Wheel, but treats his sharp Pete like it's his own.

James Frenya's 1995 Peterbilt 379"I take care of it like it's mine, but it ain't," Frenya said of the truck. "But I love it to death, so I wouldn't trade it for the world." He said that even though it's kind of "plain Jane ... it's a good running old truck."

As of the truck show in September, Frenya was hauling reefer freight for Fifth Wheel, mostly servicing Dillons/Kroger in about a 400-mile radius of Hutchinson, getting home every night.

As for the '95 Pete, it's mostly the same as it was when Fifth Wheel bought it from its previous owner, who was a cattle hauler. The only addition to the rig since then is the front bumper. 

Interior of James Frenya's 1995 Peterbilt 379The rig's interior features plenty of chrome accents on the dash, a white steering wheel to go along with the truck's theme and more.

Under the hood, the rig sports a 650-hp 3406 Cat. While the engine has been rebuilt, the truck itself as of September had 1.7 million miles behind it. 

Down the road when the economy turns around to be more favorable, Frenya said he hopes to be in position to try to buy this truck from Fifth Wheel to officially make it his own.

Rear view of James Frenya's 1995 Peterbilt 379The original owner "Blue the Budget" on the hardworking Pete, now owned and worked by Kansas-based Fifth Wheel Yard & Truck Service.

[Related: Flatbedder's '06 Pete a rolling tribute to POW/MIA veterans]

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James Frenya: James Frenya, I'm based out of Hutchinson, Kansas. Right now, I'm doing a little bit of refrigerated work for Dillons Warehouse/Kroger.

I used to do a lot of step-deck work. I'm about six years in. My dad drove for 45 years, he just retired as of last month, and my brother has been doing it for 15 years. I grew up around it. I've been around trucks since I was just a baby and it just get in your blood, you see around it, been around it... Here we are.

[It's a] 1995, like I said. Yeah, it's pretty clean for as old as it is. We bought it from what color it is now, so. I mean, we put the bumper on it, and then the duck, obviously, up there and everything. Got a 3406 Cat in it, about 650. Pretty much stock. I mean, you've got your basic chrome switches and stuff like that over it, but it's pretty stock inside. Nothing really too special on her, and she's kind of plain Jane. I mean, it's just a good running old truck. I mean, I take care of it like it's mine, but it ain't. But I love it to death, so I wouldn't trade it for the world.