Posted on 2021-07-13 12:08:27

I grew up helping my Grandpa and Dad hauling hay on the family
farm outside Mayfair, Saskatchewan. In my younger years, I spent
a lot of time in our 1986 Ford Louisville LTL9000. Dad taught me to
drive 13 speed, though I rarely made it to the top gears in the first
few years! I was seven when I started by driving the truck along the
field as dad followed with the tractor, loading my trailer with bales.

After high school, I came back to
the farm and got my license to
haul grain. That’s when I really got
bit by the trucking bug. Shortly after
getting my license, I got a job working
as a driver in the oilfield in a brand
new 2008 Peterbilt, 379 long hood flat
top with an ISX Cummins. I learned
a lot from my first boss Tim Sitter.
He taught me how to take good care
of a truck in harsh environments by keeping it clean and well maintained. I
worked with Tim for about four years,
always aspiring to become an owneroperator, and he always encouraged
me to chase my dreams. In 2011 I
got my first truck, Old Black, a 2000
Kenworth W900 powered by a red
top N14 select plus an 18-speed

As a new owner-operator, my first job was hauling grain in the prairies.
After about a year, I went back to the
oilfield but this time, with my own
truck, I was able to make better money
and be closer to my daughter, Kenley.
After a couple of years, I saved up
enough money to upgrade to a 2007
Kenworth W900 with a C15 MXS 550
Cat and an 18-speed transmission -
now known as Gypsy. I drove it in the
oilfield until 2013.

Work was starting to slow down, so
I decided to set off for something new
and joined a company out of Saskatoon,
running a long haul, which was always
my dream. I got to experience what it
was like to run from Texas to Alberta,
mostly hauling pipe for the oilfield.
Then in 2014, the oilfield crash caused
me to look for a new job, so I leased
on with another company doing deck

I had a weekend free during the job
switch, so I picked up my daughter and
went camping with my parents. That
is where I conveniently met my future
wife, Jamie. She was quite impressed
by my escapades behind the wheel of
an 18 wheeler. So when I asked her if
she wanted to come on the road with
me, she promptly quit her job as a cake
decorator of 7 years to become a truck
driver. I taught her to drive, and she got
her license, then we ran team for about
two years. 

During those two years on the road,
we had many amazing experiences.
We spent Canada Day walking around
downtown Montreal, taking in the
sights and the fireworks with some
friends who work at the same company.
It was really cool because we were in
the middle of a Military move to a base
near Quebec city so we had military
equipment on our trailers on Canada

Another time, because we were team
drivers, we could travel faster so we
were given a rush load of mobile stairs
for loading people onto evacuation
airplanes during the big fire in Fort
McMurray, Alberta. We drove through
the smoky city right after the fire had
gone through, and it was still burning
very close. 

One of my favourites was a trip where
we met up in Edmonton, Alberta, with
our good friends Mike and Rhonda,
who were also team drivers. We were
hauling Beyonce’s stage from the
Edmonton Eskimo Stadium to her next
gig in Chicago, Illinois. We had some
time to kill while waiting to load, so we headed over to the West Edmonton
Mall for some fun. Mike and I thought
we would brave the roller coaster, It
turns out we aren’t teenagers anymore,
so we slowed our pace and went
shopping with our wives. Afterwards,
we moseyed on down to the Eskimo
Stadium, driving right onto the turf
where we loaded Beyonce’s stage then
we high-tailed it to Chicago, making it
in record time.

One Friday, we ended up in a small
town in Ohio called Fort Recovery.
We were there to load a grain cart, but,
when we showed up, it was a lot taller
than it was supposed to be. So we spent
the weekend there while they made a
few changes so we could legally haul
it. We were grateful for the little break,
as Gypsy ran for most hours of the day.
We were close enough to town that we
could walk around and check out some
historic buildings at the Fort Recovery
State Museum. We were able to get
some shopping done so we could BBQ
at the truck, and just relax.

On a dark day in January of 2017, I
was involved in a horrible accident. I
was driving along on what would have
been a very normal day when a young
person attempted to take their own life.
Luckily everyone lived to see another
day, but it was an experience that I
wouldn’t wish on anyone. The accident
caused a lot of damage to both Gypsy
and my trailer, which started a long
road of financial hardships—dealing
with insurance, waiting for parts, and a
lot of downtime. All in all, it took over
four months to get Gypsy back on the

During that downtime, we acquired a
2005 International Eagle 9900i, which
became known as the Snot Rocket due
to its unique shade of green. It ended
up as Jamie’s truck once we got Gypsy
back on the road. This opened the door
for different opportunities and even
more adventures.

A great opportunity came our way
when we joined our good friend Joe
who had started a new company, Smoke’n Transport. Now Jamie and I
were able to run together more often
with both our trucks.

That summer, we were asked by
David from WoWtrucks to come to a
photoshoot for the 2018 True North
Calendar, Women in Transport. At the
photoshoot, he learned that we were
engaged and hoping to be married
soon. He offered to take some photos
of both of us, which we ended up
using for our wedding photos. Due
to the unforeseen circumstances of
my accident, our wedding plans were
drastically changed from 150 guests
to only 6. One day in December, we
were travelling together on route to
visit family for Christmas. Talking on
the CB, we decided to see if we could
get a marriage certificate somewhere
along the way. One of the places Jamie
called said that they could also do the
officiating for a very minimal fee on
top of the certificate. Jamie asked me
on the CB if we wanted to get married
tomorrow at 1 pm. I said, I do!

That spring, Joe lined up two loads
going to Whitehorse, Yukon from
Montreal, Quebec. We decided this
would make a great honeymoon. Once
we hit the Alcan highway, we stopped
every chance we got. We stopped at
Fort Nelson, British Columbia, to
catch a flick at the Phoenix theatre then
proceeded up the road to spend the
night at the Laird Hot Springs. The next
day we went to Watson Lake and took
a stroll in the Sign Post Forest before
making our way to Whitehorse. Once
entering the city area, we reported to
the scale where the DOT officer turned
travel agent gave us pamphlets for all
the cool sights to be seen in Whitehorse.
After unloading the shipping containers
full of equipment, we took a week off
and walked around the whole town,
enjoying all it had to offer. It was the
perfect trucker’s honeymoon.

Approximately 8 1/2 months later,
my wife could no longer drive her
truck, Snot Rocket, because we were
expecting a child. We decided to go
on one last trip, just the two of us. We went to Stuart, BC where Alaska is just
on the other side of the river. It was
quite a scenic winter drive. The doctors
thought we were crazy venturing so far
away, so close to the due date and not
long after we got back, our beautiful
little Adalynn was born. The arrival of
our little girl brought our team driving
chapter to a close.

I am lucky enough to have the kind
of job where I can take my kids with
me during the summer. Though I have
many stories, one of my favourite trips
was when my oldest daughter Kenley
and I went to Toronto. While there, I
broke down, so I called my good friend
Travis, who lives nearby, for help.
Somehow he was able to find the part
I needed. He rushed the part to me, but
it was too late to load by the time we
got it all fixed up. So we jumped in his
pickup and went to Niagara Falls. We
spent the night watching the light show
by the water and enjoying all there is
to see and do at the Clifton Hill Fun by
the Falls.

A couple of friends and I started a
group on Facebook called All Out Big
Rigs NoLimits. We started it to bring
our industry together for the better.

What started as a small community of
friends slowly got bigger to the point
where we could bring drivers together
for truck shows to help other people
in the industry. We have also created
fun challenges for the men and women
who put pride in their rides. David from
WoWtrucks interviews the winners,
and then we share pictures of their rigs,
and their stories, with our group. It’s
fun to be able to put a positive spin on
this challenging industry.

I am currently still enjoying the long
hauls but always looking forward to
coming home to my girls.