01/27/16

On the Road of Life

How “Grandpa and the Truck” books…a hospital database manager, and a seriously-injured trucker and his wife came together on life’s journey.john brown house author night

In Hawaii, a few years ago, I met California’s Colleen McGuinn at a luau when my husband and I visited the ONLY state this long-haul trucker had never been to (we tell school children audiences: “There are no water wings sizable enough to float a big rig.”)

While there, we got to talking about a long-haul trucker’s life…the hurdles…the excitement (pic to right shows us explaining, at a book show, what truckers do for America.)

Flash forward to December 2015, when McGuinn heard from Indiana sister-in-law Carolyn Bledsoe that Carolyn’s 72-year-old trucker friend, Jerry Matson and his wife, Janet, faced a medical crisis.

While grabbing some well-deserved shut-eye in the cab, of his big rig, in Oakland, California, Jerry was attacked by a gun-wielding assailant who broke in and shot him in the stomach. A former soldier, the trucker lunged forward and warded off his attacker who fled. But Matson suffered serious injury.

At his first hospital, he fared poorly. Infections raged and his wife, a retired ER nurse, saw little improvement. A local TV station stated that wife Janet slept in local hotels and on one occasion ‘in her car.’

When Database Manager for Saint Francis Foundation, Colleen McGuinn heard of their plight, she recalled the Grandpa and the Truck authors she met in Hawaii and set in motion a plan to help. With the approval of McGuinn’s boss, Kevin Causey, Foundation Board Chair, Tom Klein, Case Manager, Sara Lee, Linda Newton and Darlene Brady, Jerry Matson was moved into Saint Francis’s Burn Unit (because of type of wound he sustained); he was given a skin graft; and he is now on the road to full recovery.

And Janet? She’s been moved to a hotel, with room and meals for one full month, paid for by the Foundation.

Just one example of the larger community and a special hospital stepping up to help a trucker family in need. Here’s the TV station story, and pic of Database Manager, Colleen McGuinn, is below.

colleen mcguinnAs one voice representing trucker nation, Grandpa and the Truck thanks you, Colleen McGuinn and your colleagues, for your significant part in all that transpired.

(Readers:  Got your own story of a long-haul trucker who either got or gave unselfish help? Send the contact info to us… We’ll write it up and publish….If we’re personally involved, we’ll like it even better!)

#truckers, #long-haultruckers, #saintfrancisfoundation

And if you want autographed/personalized books for little ones, order them, by going to the right of this column, and clicking “Buy Now.”

Thank you. We work to get a positive image of our nation’s truckers out there…

01/23/16

Truckers Buying Our Books

gatorman(Trucker’s nickname was ‘Gater’…Truckers LOVE nicknames)

Had a talk with a recent buyer of our Grandpa and the Truck books. It seems she found us on the internet, when she was scouting around for a baby “onesie” (all-in-one outfit for you who don’t know.) You see, she’s expecting their first child and husband is a trucker. She wanted to get books that an actual trucker team writes (trucker and published author wife.)

She wants to be able to read the child the stories, showing what Daddy does when when he’s away.

Smart thinking on her part.

And if it’s a girl child, book 2 has “Girl Truckers” as its second story (each book has two) so the little one doesn’t think only men can be truckers.

Books 1 and 2 are available now, with more in the pipeline:  “How This Trucker Saw the Woodstock Music Festival”…”The West Virginia Coal-Mining Road”…”Truckers Love Their Big Rigs”…are all being readied.

Buying our books will enable us to continue with the series that accurately portrays a long-haul trucker’s life on the road.

It will also teach your child amazing things.

If you buy from us (at this website,) we can autograph your book(s), too and personalize them to the child (tell us his/her name.)

If you’ve already bought, we thank you…as does our trucking industry, for we’re the only ones doing this–telling of the important job our nation’s truckers do for the American economy. We appreciate your help.

12/19/15

Trucker Graveyard

Their big rigs have probably disintegrated, over the years, in the heat and dust of a Laredo landscape. But the bones of their drivers remain. Truckers who never made it beyond the SHORT CURVE in the road. Loved ones couldn’t retrieve, for they’d gone too far down. Now, they lay, tangled, in a Truckers’Graveyard. I bow my head when I pass, in my own big rig, and say a silent prayer………Trucking’s not for the faint of heart.

bone-pile-3614_960_720

 

 

11/30/15

Rollin’…rollin’…rollin’

christmas present--booksThey’re rolling on the superslab of the internet…Our “Grandpa and the Truck” stories, that is.

And you know what? We’re the ONLY official, real-life truckers telling these stories to little kids.

Stories of a 30-year, award-winning, long-haul trucker who traveled every state (but one) in the United States.

In these, he’s witness to a several-car pileup on a fog-enshrouded, coastal highway in California…or being chased by a pack of bloodhounds in the Virginia foothills, in quest of fuel, late at night….or waking up to a cat #5 hurricane in Biloxi, Mississippi…or seeing 2 Rhode Island women “show the boys” they’re top-rated, long-haul truckers.

His stories are real. They all happened. Just as he tells.

Exciting…suspenseful….colorful.

Just like the main character—“Gater.”

Kids love our stories because they love the big rigs and their super-hero drivers.

We think: It’s time American truckers got the attention they deserve for the job they do every day in moving the nation’s products.

Order personalized, author-signed books, now, in time for the holidays.fleet of trucks--grandpa and the truck

06/23/15

Latest School Reviews and Our Newest ‘Fan’

 

suzanne and eddy with gr and truck booksOur Newest ‘Fan’ and School Reviews of Our Show…

Suzanne Souza bought Grandpa and the Truck books for her little grandson, Eddy Gomes. Dad says he’s our ‘newest fan’ and he ‘loves your books.’ Book 1 and 2 each have two exciting, professionally-illustrated stories, maps, questions to go along with story line. Little readers go on a ride with the trucker, in the big rig. You can order each or both at our website www.grandpaandthetruck.com. We personalize and autograph, too.

School Presentation Reviews Coming In….(We invite other teachers…parents to contact us should you wish a school visit of our colorful and exciting show.)

From Principal Manuel Cabral of Walter Ranger School

“I was very happy with the presentation of Grandpa and the Truck at Ranger School. The students were super-attentive and involved. The students kept on track and involved for the entire time and for that to happen in a space of 30 minutes with kindergarten,1st and 2nd grade students is a real testament to the program.

I know it is their intention to bring trucking’s importance home to students, while we teach geography…nature…American diversity…via a vehicle they love–the big rigs. I was really impressed with the presentation.”

Mr. Cabral
Ranger School Principal

From Media Specialist for Tiverton schools (The following is quoted material from Mr. Zanghi’s review of our performance.)
Colleen,

“Thank you for your visit to our School’s. Your presentation was an exciting blend of media that truly engaged our children. They especially enjoyed the slide show and interactive mapping activity. The students (K-2) were attentive and involved during the entire time.
The presentation really demonstrated the importance of trucking to students through the use geography, nature and diversity. They love the Big Rigs.
The Librarian in me really loves the non-fiction elements (Table of Contents, Glossary, Maps and Inquiry outlines) found in each of the Grandpa Stories. Thank you again for this wonderfully informative and entertaining presentation.”

Mr. Christopher E. Zanghi
Library Media Specialist

From Michelle Loxley, IT professional with Brown Univ.

“As an IT professional and mother of two young children, I have seen many multi-media presentations and presentations targeted to children. I attended the Grandpa and the Truck presentation at Ranger school and was very impressed with Ms. Mellor’s ability to engage the children with the subject of trucking via a range of music, images, and educational visual aids. The presentation not only informed the students about trucking and the role it plays in our everyday lives and economy, but also geography, weather, and communication. The children were excited about the subject and responded to Ms. Mellor’s questions eagerly. I think the Grandpa and the Truck books are a great way to incorporate core educational concepts with engaging stories.”

Michelle Loxley…Programmer/Database Mgr. Brown Instit. For Commununity Promotion and International Health Institute