‘Granny Glitter’ and her heart of gold

May 24, 2016

Bill Hudgins


Saturday, May 21, in Nashville, Tenn., was uncommonly cool and breezy, but there was no lack of warmth at the newly christened Candy Bass Travel Center as more than 100 people gathered to salute this 41-year trucking veteran.

Nicknamed “Granny Glitter” by radio personality Marcia Campbell for her love of the twinkly powder, Bass left sparkling pixie dust patches on everyone she hugged. And there was a lot of hugging going on at the event held under a tent behind the travel center building.

“I call all of you my grandchildren!” she declared as she “adopted” someone she’d just met.

Mary Grandma Candy Bass, Citizen Driver 2016
OOIDA Life Member “Candy” Bass, center, with family, clockwise from bottom – son-in-law
Christopher Taylor, daughter Anita Taylor, Rachel Davis, wife of grandson Cody Davis who is kneeling.

2016 Citizen Driver honoree

Originally from Nashville, Bass, an OOIDA life member, adopted the downtown travel center because she’s spent so much time there during 41 years of trucking. The emcee for the event was Homer Hogg, who is now technical development manager for the TA Truck Service and Petro: Lube Truck Service business. Years ago he was a mechanic at the travel center who spun wrenches on Bass’ truck.

“Back then a lot of mechanics wouldn’t work on a woman driver’s truck,” Bass said. “They didn’t think we belonged out here and wouldn’t take our word for it when we said something was wrong.

“But Homer told me, ‘I’ll work on your truck. A truck’s a truck to me, no matter who’s driving it.’”

The presentation opened with a three-song set by recording artist and Highway Angel Program spokesperson Lindsay Lawler, which included her signature song, “Highway Angel.”

During the presentation, travel center chefs grilled mounds of brats and burgers for the cookout lunch. Also on hand were OOIDA Life Members Buz and Laurie Scutt with their NASCAR simulator.

Among her many charitable and service contributions, “Grandma” Candy has been involved with Trucker Buddy International, sponsored a Special Olympics swimming team, and been active with Truckers United For Charities. In addition, she was inspired to found a charity, “Hats for Heroes,” a program that provides baseball caps to veterans who have head injuries or burns.

Associate Editor Greg Grisolano contributed to this report.

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