Grandpa and the Truck Books Present at R.I. Library Assoc. Annual Conference

Against the gorgeous backdrop of Newport’s impressive Salva Regina University,  the Rhode Island Librarians Annual Conference invited Grandpa and the Truck books for their Poster Session (think Science Fair set-up but with books.) Paul, the long-haul trucker and I, the author of Grandpa and the Truck books, got to regale the crowd with what we do:  Bring the story of the big rigs to kids everywhere.  We showed them recent pix and principal Manuel Cabral’s commendation regarding our highly-successful presentation at Walter Ranger Elementary in Tiverton, RI. Our success isn’t surprising:  Our books are the collaborative effort of a RI retired teacher/now a successful writer  of Op-Ed’s that appear monthly on the pages of Providence Journal and Elite Fleet driver/Atlas Van Lines’s long-haul trucker, Paul Wesley Gates. Biggest international trucker’s association, OOIDA, and Women in Trucking (WIT) applaud our efforts, as do librarians, teachers, parents, and grandparents (some of whom were truckers who want to share their experiences on the road with grandchildren.)

Now we invite schools to book our exciting show for next year (we’ve done audiences of hundreds of kids–and kept them in rapt attention). We’re going through the state, showing how a big rig’s travels teach many things, in an exciting way. We’re every bit true to our tagline “We Teach Geography…and a Whole Lot More.” We wowed Principal Manuel Cabral of Walter Ranger School, in Tiverton, prompting him to say: 

“I was very happy with the presentation of Grandpa and the Truck at Ranger School. The students were super-attentive and involved… 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 was really impressed with the presentation.

We invite you to contact us at ckmellor@cox.net.

For further information,  go to our website at


RI Librarian Assoc. Conference--Newport


Grandpa and the Truck Wows at Tiverton Schools!

We Teach Geography…and a Whole Lot Moregr and truck kids enact geography


We Had a Brilliant Time! The kids at Walter Ranger School, in Tiverton were terrific. With fun sound effects and pictures capturing their attention, we brought our young audience across America, in the big rig. They asked lots of questions, too, of the trucker, like “Were you ever scared driving the big rig?” And “How much money does a big rig cost?” (answer $250-300,000).

They giggled at all the right places and swayed to our opening tune of “Nitro Express,” when a big rig hurtles down a mountain road, with its 18 wheels smoking, sparks flying all along, heading right for a little town in the valley. At the end, they helped act out our geography lesson pulling together our presentation that involved “How many miles are there from Boston, Ma. to San Francisco?” “How far out in the Pacific is little Hawaii?” “How many miles wide is little Rhode Island?” (37 miles), where kids in the car never really have to ask “Are we there yet?” (37 miles.) We loved it and they were a spectacular audience.

In the words of Principal Manuel Cabral: “I was very happy with the presentation of Grandpa and the Truck at Ranger School. The students were super-attentive and involved… 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 was really impressed with the presentation.gr and truck--quests from little onesgr and truck--things truckers fear most--ranger


“Grandpa and the Truck” Going to 2 Big Audiences in Tiverton, RI

Our flyer announcing our first BIG show….

“Grandpa and the Truck” coming to Walter E. Ranger and Ft. Barton schools May 13, 2015.cab and trucker

Named to Atlas Van Lines’s “Elite Fleet” (of drivers,) “Gator” drove millions of miles, flawlessly, across America in the big rig.

Now, he tells his exciting adventures to student audiences, focusing on the men and women who drive these big metal beasts….their challenges…natures’ role (hurricanes, fog, ice) and the beauty and diversity of our great land.

“Grandpa and the Truck’s” trucker and 30-year retired teacher, Providence Journal Op-Ed writer, Colleen Kelly Mellor (trucker’s wife and author) bring their lively show to Tiverton little ones.

Signed and personalized books may be ordered right here, on this website






We Were a Smash Hit at the Authors’ Expo


This past Saturday was our first appearance at RI Authors’ Expo…We are the first to produce the Grandpa and the Truck books (for kids 4-9), about husband’s 30-year big rig career, transporting household goods all over America. OOIDA has named us “Cool Gifts for Kids” and Women in Trucking endorses us, too. And now, schools are inviting us in, since we’re the perfect vehicle to teach geography, nature, science, math, and important life lessons.  They love the fact, too, that we meet  Common Core standards.

This is our first entry into the book fair circuit but we’ve got lots more appearances on tap. We’re especially thrilled with the schools who are signing up to test-drive our books.

Our books are perfect as gifts for the countless children’s birthdays folks need a present for…Christmas…Channukah…kwanza.

If you’re a trucker, why not give a gift that tells others the important job you do, in moving ALL of America’s products? So far, no one’s done that. We aim to change that.

If you’re a trucker’s family, you’ll love the fact we recognize truckers as True American Folk-Heroes.

If you buy our books for a child, tell us how to personalize and we’ll autograph (how cool is that?) Then the books become a rare, individualized gift for a child, instead of a store-bought, everyday item…

Finally, your purchase will enable us to continue telling a trucker’s tales to our biggest fan base (kids), so truckers can finally get the recognition they so richly deserve.

Pay buttons are above….and “Thank you.”


Grandpa and the Truck Rap…..

 boysThree little kids (2 boys…one girl), with crazy hats?, colorful sunglasses (on one?), leaning against trees in their backyard, or on a playground, rap to following: They ham it up, putting on “surprise” face (“was surprised”) or make steering motions for line “That he manned the big rigs.” Imagine their other effects, too, as they rap to the following…..


Asked Grampy what he did

For his money-earning  gig

Was surprised when he told us

That he manned the big rigs.


In his truck, “Proud Mary”

Sitting high on his seat,

Went to every state but one…

Oh, that job was sweet….


****(Cut away to one boy saying)………”Except for when it wasn’t”


Saw a 6-car pileup

Off a California highway

Following  a “smokie”

On a super-foggy day


Partner Ralph found out

Just how dangerous it can get

In the foothills of Virginia

When bloodhounds aren’t pets.


In Biloxi, Mississippi

Grandpa stopped for shrimp ‘n grits

But his motel lost its roof

When the hurr-i-cane hit.


Rhody’s “Girl Truckers” proves

Men and women are the same

They should do the jobs they want to

Never ones based on their names.


Soon… Grandpa will tell

Of the time he got stuck

On a New York State highway

Two whole days in his truck


(One child says:  “They called it ‘Woodstock.’ “)


Then, there’s West Virginia

When he climbed that mountain road

In coal-mining region

With a full household load.


(Little girl says:  “To bring a little girl her toys.”)


His stories teach geography

In a way that’s really cool

They tell us other things, too…

Not always taught in school…


Grammy says they’re ‘wholesome’ (Other little boy shrugs “What’s that?”)

Their lessons are a must…

They’re all “Made in America”…(Pause)

In a way… they’re just like us.


To buy our books, just go to “Grandpa and the Truck books” in top bar, click on it, and once page comes up, find the Pay button (just click it and it allows you to pay via Visa or any other, if you don’t have Paypal account.)