4 months ago

The Trucker Newspaper - April 15, 2018

Recruiting Area

Recruiting Area Terminals 38 • April 15-30, 2018 Features b Hero from page 37 b Moody’s incident happened when he was fighting traffic on a Chicago freeway. The only reason he was on that stretch of highway was because he’d missed the turnoff to the highway he had wanted to use. As he was driving along, three motorcycles passed him. A biker himself, Moody remembered admiring the bikes and thinking, “Man, I wish I was riding right now.” The motorcyclists got a few car lengths ahead of him, and two of them started to take an exit. As far as he could tell the third biker’s wheels locked up for some reason and he went end-over-end. Moody said for a split second he was afraid he wouldn’t be able to stop, but he not only stopped but he swerved his truck to block traffic and prevent anyone else from running over the downed biker. Moody then jumped out of his truck and tended to the unconscious motorcyclist, who was bleeding from a head injury. Moody literally gave him the shirt off his back, wrapping it around the man’s head, while trying to calm down other bystanders who’d stopped. Moody, who drives for System Transport, based in Cheney, Washington, said he’s exmilitary, as was his dad, so all his life it’s been ingrained in him when things “hit the fan, you deal with it.” Moody stayed with the motorcyclist until paramedics arrived. They later credited him with saving the man’s life. “One of the officers said, ‘hey, do you want your shirt back?’ I said, no that’s his now.” Vieira, who marked his 30th anniversary as a driver last year, was driving near Toronto one day when he heard a loud crash on a two-lane stretch of highway, looked over his shoulder and saw that a car on the other side of the road had slammed into the back of a stationary roll-off truck. Vieira parked his truck, ran to the car, and found the driver, whose neck had been pierced by a piece of his own vehicle’s steering wheel, which had snapped off on impact. “He had this thing on the right side of the neck,” Vieira said. Immediately, he placed one of his hands over the still-conscious motorist’s wound and applied direct pressure, while using his other hand to call for help. As he was doing this, the driver of the truck that had been hit had walked up, saw the impaled motorist, and fainted. Vieira said he didn’t even notice him until he saw the driver sprawled out on the ground, his legs lying over the line into the opposing lane of traffic. Without letting go of the first driver, Vieira managed to use his foot to pull the leg of the truck driver who had fainted away from traffic. Emergency personnel arrived and took over. Both men survived. Vieira was surprised it’s become such a big thing, the attention he’s getting. He hadn’t planned on even mentioning it to anyone until someone at his carrier, Connell Transport, caught wind of the incident and folks started calling him a hero. Like the others, he was there and did what needed doing. “It’s a great feeling to be appreciated.” “When I think about it, it seemed like it took half an hour, but it all happened in maybe four minutes,” Vieira said. He was so in the moment, he’s not even sure how he managed to do everything at once the way he did. “Not much thought goes through your mind; you just do it.” After the incident he didn’t think much of it, either. “I was actually going to let this fly under the table and not talk about it,” he said. But word got around and before he knew it other people were congratulating him on his heroism. It’s the one aspect of his experience he shares with his fellow nominees. “I don’t feel like a hero,” Bucenell said. “I didn’t literally safe anybody’s life. I never felt heroic about it. I felt like I did what was right.” When he heard he’d been nominated for the Goodyear Highway Hero award, he first thought one of his buddies was pulling a prank on him. Moody also downplayed his incident. “To me I was just at the right place at the right time,” he said. “Somebody needed help and I was there. I don’t feel like I need any recognition; I just did the right thing.” But others felt otherwise, and as it has for the previous 34 years, Goodyear put them in the spotlight. In the end, Vieira was named the winner of the top Highway Hero honor. Days after he heard the decision, he continued to wear the hero’s mantle with humility. “If it inspires other drivers, great. The more we help, the better this world becomes, right?” 8 First they came for the Small Brokers, and I did not speak out- Because I was not a Small Broker. Then they came for the Small Carriers, and I did not speak out- Because I was not a Small Carrier. Then they came for Owner-Operators, and I did not speak out- Because I was not an Owner-Operator. Then they came for meand there was nO OnE left to speak for me. Sign the ELD Petition & Fight Back! Join the Small Business in Transportation Coalition search: Find us on Facebook The Trucker Features April 15-30, 2018 • 39