Wednesday, December 23, 2009

You can’t make this stuff up

What started out Tuesday as a script-ready sequel to “The Nightmare Before Christmas” was quickly rewritten to something closer to “Miracle on Interstate 40.”

Arrow Trucking left its drivers in a lurch all around the country when it ceased operations early Tuesday – with no warning.

Loyal drivers were left holding the bag. Some had fueled, but the company’s card wouldn’t pay the bill – leaving the drivers criminally on the hook for the bill. Other drivers were on fumes with no way to get home.

The insanity of the inhuman treatment left everyone connected to the industry outraged.

That lasted only minutes, though.

The offers for support, rides, meals, etc., began to flood into OOIDA HQ. The Land Line Magazine Facebook Fan Page started getting offers to help posted to it. The Twitter accounts of OOIDA, Land Line Magazine and Land Line Now employees were receiving offers.

In an effort to centralize these offers of generosity, we created the Support for Stranded Arrow Trucking Drivers - Coordinate Efforts Here page on Facebook.

That’s when the miracle started.

In less than 20 hours, more than 1,000 people had joined the page. The offers for everything from warm blankets to a ride home poured in. Drivers’ families jumped in. Dispatchers, mechanics, other companies – the list of people wanting to help is without end.

One stranded Arrow driver put up a request for help early Wednesday morning.

“im an arrow driver and dont know what to do im about 100mi in checotah,ok but dont know if ill have the fuel to get home any help would be great,” Joseph Marfia posted.

In less than an hour, Louis Long responded that he was only an hour away from Joseph and would be happy to pick him up.

The former Arrow trucker, who is now with Maverick, gave Joseph his phone number and that’s all it took.

“He was only 70 miles away from me. I wouldn’t have been a good person if I didn’t help him,” Louis said. “He put in that he needed help and he got help.”

That help came in the form of a ride, a hot breakfast, help cleaning out the truck and a ride to the bus terminal.

And that’s just one of literally thousands of examples of the giving, generous nature of the trucking industry.

In the days and hours that followed the announcement that these drivers were left high and dry, truckers, their families and pretty much anyone with a soul were combing the ends of the country looking for any Arrow driver in need.

What started out as a tragic situation has turned and given us all a sense pride and happiness to be a part of such an amazing bunch of people who refused to let Arrow trucking do this to our own.

17 comments:

  1. This is why I love being a Driver true American Spirit and Love of fellow drivers really proud how the drivers stood up for truth, maybe with this kind of motivation we can change trucking forever!!!!GODBLESS...Brian Cade Ohio Driver

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  2. WOW TO COOL THAT EVERYONES COME TOGETHER LIKE THS TO HELP OUT REALLY GIVES YA A GOOD HOLIDAY FEELIN LETS NOT STOP TIL WE GET EVERY DRIVER HOME LEAVE NO ONE BEHIND

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  3. I am proud to be a part of the extended family of truckers. My dad was and my husband is a truck driver. I was furious when I first read about Arrow and then overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity shown by our 'family.' I am hoping and praying that all of Arrow's drivers and every other driver out there make it home safe and sound to their families. God bless. Stephanie H - trucker's wife in Missouri

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  4. God Bless All that Jumped in to help.
    Being a truckers Wife I must say All Truckers are a special Breed

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  5. I wish we had know earlier. We just got off a straight-thru run from Vegas to Louisville, and missed the news. Please keep us up to speed, and we'll help out where we can.

    Loose_Cannon - Expedite Driver

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  6. Sorry Brian. This will only be a fleeting light in the darkness.
    Come next week - driver eat driver.

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  7. I've been out of work and stuck at home and so glad to hear that people still care enough to help these drivers out. Hopefully we can all get back to work after Christmas, God willing and people get back to doing honest business and get these companies to quit playing games with poeples lives and lets all work together for Christ's sake.

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  8. As a former Arrow driver spouse...I want to give my heartfelt gratitude to everyone who is helping get these drivers home. My husband did make it home safely. Thank you America for helping get our drivers safely home and for all of the hospitality being given out there. I am truly overwhelmed with the love and support being shown these guys.

    Next to get my man a job again.

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  9. Thank You OOIDA for getting this information out so quickly.
    This is just one of the many reasons every driver in America NEEDS to be a member.

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  10. It does my heart good to see that when it really matters we can all come together and make a difference.

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  11. Not all of us offering help are truckers.

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  12. THIS IS THE ONE THING DRIVERS HAVE ALWAYS BEEN KNOWN TO DO JUST LET A FELLOW DRIVER NEED THIS KINDA HELP THE SHIRT OFF THE BACK IS JUST A SMALL TOKEN I SIT AT HOME CHECKED ON FACE BOOK CALLED DEALERSHIPS IN MY AREA BUT APPRENTLY THE NEEDS HAD ALREADY BEEN TAKEN CARE OF WE ARE NOT HEROES AND MOST WOULD NOT GIVE YOU A NAME BUT WOULD PROUDLY GIVE YOU THE SHIRT OFF HIS BACK I AM NOT A MEMBER OF OOIDA OR ANY OTHER GROUP JUST A DRIVER AND THATS ALL ROLL ON DRIVERS ROLL ON AND BLESS ALL OF THEM HOPE EACH AND EVERY ONE GETS HOME TO BE WITH FAMILY AS THAT MAY BE ALL THAT THEY HAVE BUT BELIVE THAT THE SPIRIT WHICH WAS SHOWN WILL CARRY THESE GUYS TO THE NEXT STEPS IN THERE LIVES AND CAREERS GOD BLESS AND MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ALL

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  13. What other industry would so many band together to help? I am proud to be a truck driver and the wife of a trucker!!!

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  14. I have no association with any truck driver, but I am so glad to be able to offer help. What Arrow have done is despicable. It is about time that big corporations were held responsible for their actions. I am in south western north carolina (asheville/brevard/cedar mtn/hendersonville). To have another person at our Christmas table tomorrow would be a blessing! xx

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  15. As a former Arrow driver, the out pouring of help and concerne has overwelmed me. Frank and Sue Ann (also Arrow Drivers) called me while the fuel was going into my tanks, told me the company was shutting its doors and it was going to become official in the am. There were 3 other Arrow drivers there trying to get fuel. Im now criminaly responsible for the fuel. I was given a ticket and told to have the fuel paid for by the 12th of January..The officer told me to haul butt for the house. I offered a ride to the drivers, one took off on his own and the other called freightliner and coordinated the pickup of his truck and trailer and my trailer. The TA bought our breakfast and we took off towards Louisiana, stopping at Petro, Flying J, TA, and Pilots along the way looking for our stranded bretheren. In West Memphis we were told to park so a Mercer Driver could feed us and found 2 more arrow drivers. In Little Rock we found 4 more former arrow drivers. Im happy to report that everyone that got into my truck made it home safely. I pulled into the house yesterday afternoon. Thank You America for all the help and support. Thanks to the TA in Matthews Missouri that gave us a hot meal and made sure we were taken care of. Thank to the Drivers that offered meals and money to eat on through out our journey. To our fellow stranded drivers..If I can help in any way please let me know.
    Ms. Kitty Texas driver

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  16. God speaks in mysterious ways. Earlier this week I was upset that my husband was not going to make it home for Christmas this year. We have a one month old baby and a five year old. This tragedy happened and I saw the outpour of support and it brought tears to my eyes. My husband may not be here to be with us, but he has a job. He is not stranded somewhere with no way home and past due bills waiting for him when he gets here. It makes me feel good that if that had been us there are so many people willing to help. This has truely been a Christmas Miracle after all. G8keeper, trucker's wife MO an proud OOIDA member

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  17. I was an Arrow Driver and was stranded in GA. I live in Texas. My wife watched Facebook and when a small company "Fairfield Trucking" with an office near Athens, Ga posted that they would help my wife called. Not only did they buy a plane ticket home for me, They came to my truck and helped me pack all my belongings up and shipped them home too. They put me in a hotel room and feed me too. There was aslo a stiff drink provided. They were strangers to me, did not know them from Adam. Because of what Arrow did to their drivers these people poured out there hearts and I got to make it home for Christmas. You will never ever beable to make me believe that God is not real, because Christmas 2009, God showed me he does live. I met his angels, and there are many out there who haved showed themselves across the country this christmas season.

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