Twelve “Trucker Buddy of the Month” recipients were honored at a news conference March 22 as part of the Mid-America Trucking Show.
Several were present to talk about “their” kids and what it means
to participate in the program.
Executive Director Randy Schwartzenburg opened the assembly
by announcing that the Trucker Buddy program is entering its
22nd year and now has over 2,100 drivers and 2,200 teachers participating.
The program serves over 60,000 school children, he said. Schwartzenburg also touted the organization’s “Trucking Mentor” program, which provides safe-driving instruction to high school
students to prepare them to share the road with the commercial
vehicles they will encounter.
K.C. Brau, Trucker Buddy president, proudly handed out the
plaques as Schwartzenburg announced each monthly winner
and highlighted their accomplishments.
Four of the recipients were present to receive their awards.
Another two were one the way when delayed by truck breakdowns
, according to Schwartzenburg.
June awardee Todd Fisher, also a Trucker Buddy “Ambassador,”
talked about his second grade class of students at Aurora
Elementary School in Aurora, Neb.
He discussed how he worked with teacher Pam Grady to keep
the students informed of his whereabouts and bring them
information about the geographic areas he visits. Fisher drives
for Mast Trucking.
October recipient Larry Huguenard, representing Cliff
Viessman Inc., accepted his award for his association with
teacher Cory Hyslop’s fifth grade class at Oakdale Elementary
School in Rock Hill, S.C.
Mike Cunningham of Walmart Transportation was the
November recipient. He shares a special relationship with the
teacher from Hayes Grade Center in Ada, Okla., since she
happens to be his wife, Sharon.
December recipient Bruce Wehner spoke last, telling of how
he brought samples of cotton plants to first and second grade
students of teacher Rose Wenzel at the Assumption BVM
Catholic School in Pulaski, Wis.
“Being close to Green Bay,” he said, “I knew they’d never
seen cotton growing, so I just brought them a few plants.”
Wehner’s wife, Donita, was on hand to help him celebrate the award.
Winners who were not present at the event included
• January: Roy Sewell, Intercity Lines, representing Michele Chilenski’s third-grade class at Olde Sawmill Elementary, Dublin, Ohio.
• February: Robert Costa of Clark Transfer, representing Mrs. Leslie Wolf’s third-grade class at Robert L. Forbuss Elementary in Las Vegas, Nev.
• March: Steve Gilbert, Walmart Transportation, representing Mrs. Poulous kindergarten through third grade class at Fallbrook Street School in Fallbrook, Calif.
• April: Frank Silio of Publix Foods Transportation Group, representing Lenae Herman’s Delprado Elementary School, Boca Raton, Fla.
• May: Dave Baker of Baker and Sons, representing teacher Susan Bailey’s second-grade class at South Hope Elementary in Oregon, Mo.
• July: Mike Mattingly of Mercer Transportation, representing Carla Eutsler’s fourth through sixth grade class at Friendship Village School, Friendship, Maine.
• August: Stuart Goldbert of Averitt Express, representing teacher Jocelyn Murphy-Stout at Egg Harbor City Community School, Egg Harbor, N.J.
• September: Sherryll Byrd of United Van Lines, representing teacher Carole Sylvester’s second-grade class at Oak Grove School, Ojai, Calif.