Mafia Secrets Advice from the Boss Man
379 with a ‘Hide-Out’ Retro Sleeper
Bryan "Boss Man" Martin
Most of you, if you travel anywhere through Missouri, Arkansas, Kansas, Texas or Nebraska, have seen a cattle hauler with a “KILGORE” porch light. But not many have seen the latest addition to Satha Kilgore’s operation, this hot lil’ 1996 Peterbilt 379. Rewind to this past March at the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Ky., where the truck made its debut with a new “old” sleeper and several other upgrades to provide something a little different.
Satha and his wife, Julie, own and operate S&J Kilgore Trucking LLC out of Macomb, Mo., which was formed in 2000. They run three trucks of their own, including this Pete. Even though their mainstay is cow trucking, they also run refrigerated units in combination with Satha’s father, Harry, and Satha’s brother, Shelbe. As a family, they run a total of 14 trucks and use approximately 10 outside owner-operators to make it all happen.
If you made it to Louisville, you certainly noticed this truck in the Paul K. Young Truck Beauty Competition lot hooked to a brand new 2019 Wilson 53-foot spread-axle livestock trailer. A big part of the curb appeal is the polished 63-inch HideOut Series flat top sleeper. This sleeper is a Chrome Shop Mafia custom-built part that substantially adds to the overall retro look of this 379. Prior to this install, the truck had a painted-to-match 36-inch bunk. Kilgore had “359 style” maroon upholstery installed in the new sleeper, as well as in the truck cab. Satha loves the extra space the 63-inch sleeper provides, the diamond-shaped back windows, and the durable aluminum construction designed into the bunk. He already has plans to do the same bunk swap with one of his other trucks in the near future.
Satha purchased the truck in 2017, and it is pretty much his “baby.” He is essentially the only one who drives this truck. Performing the dispatcher function for 20-plus trucks keeps him on the telephone more than he likes, but he still manages to run this truck steadily throughout the year. As the owner of a family business, Satha wears many hats, and he has realized over time there is a need for a backup plan in the event a truck breaks down, especially in the livestock hauling, there needs to be another truck able to recover a load in a timely fashion. That is a major function of this old-school rig. He shut the truck down near the end of February 2018 to allow time to get the truck ready for the Mid-America Trucking Show.
Take a close look at the photos. Just the right amount of add-ons make this truck classically customized without so much jewelry that it loses its vintage-themed look. It features a bowtie sun visor, 7-inch Vendetta exhaust stacks, polished fuel tanks, classic air cleaner lights, moderate wheelbase, and a 1980s-era paint design. A few other exterior accessories include a boltless Valley Chrome boxed-end bumper with a flip kit, and a pair of Hogebuilt half fenders. Under the hood, you’ll find a 550hp CAT 6NZ motivating this truck, along with an 18 speed transmission, 3:55 rears and a wheelbase of 265 inches. Inside the truck is simple, clean and period correct.
Some may wonder about Satha’s name, but what most don’t know, along with him and his over 150 cousins, his grandfather had actually named all of the grandchildren. Each child was given a unique name with many names aligning with their Native American heritage. Satha and Julie have an 8-year-old son named Barrett and have raised him surrounded by good-ol’ western movies and, of course, another generation of truck lovers.
Hooked on trucks since he was a kid, Satha always knew he would be trucking one day. Growing up “cow truckin,’” as he says, was all there was, and he was addicted to trucks and would ride with his dad whenever he could. (Sound familiar anyone?) His dad, Harry, drove for a trucking company up until 1996, when he purchased his first truck, which is still in the family and owned by Satha’s brother, Shelbe. Ranching and trucking are what their family survived on and still what keeps them going today. This company, through blood, sweat and tears, is homegrown. No money has been passed down from generation to generation. Instead, the growth and success is a product of a lot of hard work, commitment and dedication – a Kilgore legacy and character trait that definitely remains in the family. I can testify that it won’t be often that you call Satha and need a load moved, and as long as the rate is right, that he won’t have a truck “on the way.”
This lil’ blue Pete, like the rest of the operation, proves that building something “a little different” is nearly always a rig that ends up being pretty doggone cool. LL