2019 Truckers for Troops brings in more than $32,000

February 2020

Greg Grisolano

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OOIDA’s Truckers for Troops 2019 saw truckers showing their support for U.S. military personnel at home and abroad, by raising $32,574 during the campaign. That brings the total raised via Truckers for Troops to more than $667,500.

Nearly 1,700 members participated in the event, which ran from Monday, Nov. 11, through Friday, Nov. 15.

During the radiothon, Land Line Now focused on a number of projects that have received contributions from Truckers for Troops. Those programs include a Veterans Affairs hospital in Tucson, Ariz., that uses golf to promote physical therapy with wounded warriors and a VA program in Kansas City, Mo., fighting to eradicate homelessness among veterans.

To date, the Association has sent more than 3,200 large care packages and provided items to nearly 39,000 military personnel stationed in war zones. All the purchasing, organizing and packing of the boxes is handled by OOIDA staff volunteers, ensuring that 100% of the money raised is used to purchase items and cover shipping.

In 2015, the Association expanded the program’s mission to include supplying needed items to various medical care facilities for wounded or needy veterans back in the states. Truckers for Troops has stepped in to fill gaps in services, by providing donations such as socks, sweatpants and even athletic equipment.

Participation in the campaign isn’t limited just to truckers. Pets are welcome to join in also. The Pet Challenge allows a member to sponsor the entire cost of a care package – $225 – in the name of their favorite pet or traveling companion.

Jon Osburn, skipper of OOIDA’s Spirit of the American Trucker touring truck, submitted a pledge on behalf of Sassi, his canine co-pilot. Lewie Pugh, OOIDA’s executive vice president, sponsored two packages on behalf of his dog, Bandit.

OOIDA matches 10% of new and renewed memberships paid and donations during the campaign to fund care packages for troops overseas and to provide needed supplies to long-term care facilities treating wounded veterans. Veterans are a huge part of the trucking industry overall, and more than one-third of all OOIDA members have served in the military.

OOIDA requests the names and addresses of troops serving in active combat zones or veteran facilities with unmet needs to add to the Association’s list of recipients. Call the name and address in to Nikki Johnson at OOIDA at 816-229-5791. You also may email her at Troops@OOIDA.com. Be sure to include an address and a projected stateside return date for individuals.

Those combat zones include Afghanistan, the Kosovo area of Yugoslavia, and the Arabian Peninsula areas. These include the Persian Gulf, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman, part of the Arabian Sea, Gulf of Aden, and the countries of Bahrain, Iraq, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.

In addition, the Association seeks handmade cards or letters for inclusion in care packages. If you would like to include a card or letter in the package, please send it to OOIDA, attention: Truckers for Troops, P.O. Box 1000; Grain Valley, MO 64029. Towns or school names can be included, but please do not include last names or other personal information. LL

Greg Grisolano

Greg Grisolano joined Land Line in 2013. He was formerly a reporter for the Joplin Globe. He brings business writing and photography skills to Land Line, and has a passion for finding and telling stories about the people who make up the trucking industry.