Archive for the ‘charity’ Category
July 14, 1957-January 17, 2012
When a driver leaves this world, many people are left behind. When James (Rick) Lawhun began his ultimate journey January 17, 2012, he left behind his loving wife of 20 years and family. Taken unexpectedly, Rick left a lasting impression on many people and his wife, Teresa, remembers him and is reaching out to a family that took Rick as one of their own…a family a truckers.
Teresa wrote “Like so many of the last of the Highway Cowboys or White Knights, He was a different breed, A professional always when it came to his driving…courteous, helpful safe”. She remembers him as a professional, safe and helpful driver who not only used common sense but a sense of humor to do his job and help others. “He was the only man I knew that could talk his way out of a ticket. After he made a u-turn with a set of doubles in front of a cop. convincing the officer that he didn’t see what he thought he seen. “
His wife also remembers him as a practical joker and always looking to make you laugh and smile no matter how bad it really was. “He had no problem being brutally honest. Then convince you he was right. If you called him for comforting word. He would say “I may not have the right words for you, but I can help you cry”. By the end of the conversation he would have you laughing.”
Teresa is reaching out to Rick’s “other” family, a family close knit and always reaching out to help. When Rick passed away, finances were available to lay him to rest but there was not enough to pass a marker for his final resting place. Teresa has asked for drivers to help in this. Whether it be a dime or a dollar, every little bit helps. The family is asking is for assistance in paying for a marker. Donations can be made through www.jrbmfund.org and placing Rick’s name or “monument” in the comment section. The Jacob Russell Boulanger Memorial Fund for Truckers Inc. will be doing a pass through to the the Houpt Monument Co of Marion, OH. Funds will be collected by the organization and passed through to the monument company for Rick’s final marker.
JRBM fund is a registered 501(c)3 charitable organization with the purpose of providing a hand up, not a hand out; truckers helping truckers.
Right click and print this picture and take it with you to Applebee’s if you are dining anywhere in the Louisville area on Wednesday or Thursday while visiting the Mid-America Truck Show. If you give a copy of this flyer to your waitress when you order a percentage of your check will be donated to the JRB Memorial Fund.
The Trucker Charity Christmas Group has been successful in its effort by providing 49 families over $30,000 in their 3 year run. They have spawned a full-time organization dedicated to helping truckers in need. OOIDA Life Member Lance Wood of Summerfield, IL, is a member of the Christmas group. He now heads Trucker Charity, Inc., a 501(c)(3) that helps truckers in need year round by; "Getting them fed, getting them safe and getting them home". Just last month they were able to get 5 drivers home from being stranded on the road under various circumstances, some referred to them by OOIDA.
They raise funds by selling items on the Trucker Charity Christmas Group Fundraising website and via donations. Nominations for needy trucking families will be accepted through Saturday, Dec. 19th.
On Dec 19th, a panel of volunteers, including OOIDA Member Kerry Mullins of West Lafayette In, and OOIDA Life Member Ralph Acocella of Hickory, NC, will review applications start the selection process which is done by a secret vote and based on a point system for an unbiased treatment of the families.
Mullins is the secretary of Trucker Charity and has been involved in the last 2 fund drives. He is hopeful this will be the best year yet but they need the help from fellow trucker’s to make it happen. This is Acocella’s 2nd on the panel, and he is looking forward to helping his fellow drivers with some Christmas joy. Trucker’s helping Trucker’s, that’s what it’s all about with these professionals.
Trucker Charity Inc is a 501(c)(3) charity with it’s main office located in Summerfield Ill.
Our beginnings were as many organizations the actions of individuals. Some driver would become needy, and among the ATN Fans drivers would talk together and pool resources to help that driver.
In small groups we shared concerns, and we shared some efforts. Many of us did what we did quietly through friends in the belief that the recipient should not know where the aid was coming from. “Thank You” was not something most of us wanted to hear. Some of the recipients later became benefactors to others because, among the ATN Fans as among the trucking community in general, the belief in “pay me forward” rather than “pay me back” is strong. Some people did “pay back” when they were helped, those funds always seemed to find a new need to be applied to.
Over time it was only natural that small groups started discussing formalizing an organization to continue this effort. The shock we all experienced when one of the hosts of the radio show our group seemed to revolve around experienced the crushing loss in his personal life that our efforts could not ameliorate, gave some of us the spark that galvanized us into action at last.
Jacob Boulanger and his father Eric ( Bubba Bo) and Steven Sommers and his father Steve are for many of the ATN listeners an extended family. It seemed only fitting that we should guarantee that our trucking community efforts should reflect our acknowledgment of that relationship. Steven we agree to uplift in all his endeavors, and as a group we rejoice in his accomplishments. Jacob however we will with our own efforts try to honor because his life was cut short.
This memorial fund is the continuation of our community building that for most of us began with our participation in, and enjoyment of, the ATN show. Our hope is to also spread the community beyond the ATN audience to the entire trucking community. It is after all the entire trucking community we belong to that shares the beliefs that we put into practice here. Our roots as an organization are after all only the place to gain nourishment for the living plant we are bringing to life here. A fund by truckers for use helping truckers.
Country Dan Rolling Along Thanks to Leland Martin and Truckers
I received this email today;
Hey Yoda, Here are some pictures of Country Dan getting his scooter donated by Darwin. I’ll send more when we are done. We are still working on getting the lift going for his car to haul it. He also got a chair donated to him so he can get around in his house. The scooter is too big to get around in his house. But he needs the scooter to get into work. There are some steep grades that the chair will not handle so we are glad he has the scooter! He has steep grades at his work place that he has to endure! There is also a steep grade at his driveway, so he really needs it to go down to get his mail too. I will write Darwin right now and tell him I sent you some pictures to post and that Country Dan really loves that scooter! I am also calling Landline and having them to give an update on the progress of helping Country Dan! Talk to you more soon. Thanks!
Country Dan(Seated) and Leland Martin, showing off the new scooter that will help Country Dan get around!
The story of how a charity designed to work as a group of drivers helping other drivers got involved in this effort is not all that hard to explain. A driver that contacted the charity with his own needs, saw the original email Leland sent me asking for help getting Country Dan ( one of the personalities from the truckers channel on XM RADIO) a powered wheel chair so that he could go back to work. That driver had a chair that his mother had used. Both he and his mother met Country Dan at the Louisville truck show, and were fans. The rest thanks to the tireless efforts of Leland Martin is history now being made.
The community of truckers is alive and well. The community was kept alive or rebuilt by late night radio hosts and continued by XM open road and now Sirius Road Dog listeners. The next time someone says you cannot get 3 truck drivers to agree on anything or to work together, tell them about this story.
Country Dan really appreciates the new Ride!
As a side note, the request we posted from Leland Martin generated a second powered chair that will be stored in Cincinnati to be available to a driver who needs it. The St Christopher’s fund, the MERV, the medical supply company that donated new batteries for this chair, and several individuals and drivers not to mention the listener who donated the chair all came together to accomplish this. St Christopher’s fund will probably be the charity most likely to ask the chair to go to an individual who will need it because they are in the medical field. But the availability of it to them simply makes their efforts and all truckers interested in helping truckers efforts that much closer to meeting someone’s need. Who would have thought all these years later that listening to a radio show directed at truck drivers would have such good consequences?