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Drive My Way veteranOn this Veterans Day, Americans are remembering the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice, or who went off to war and returned forever changed, like Drive My Way veteran Kevin Garner.

But not all who serve go to war. Those who serve U.S. interests stateside still feel a tremendous call to duty, however, even without battle scars haunting their days.

Drive My Way’s driver recruiting consultant, Kevin Garner, is among the Army soldiers who never went to war. But the U.S. Army veteran still stands strongly for the U.S. Army motto, “This We’ll Defend,” 12 years after his service ended.

“There’s a lot more to the military than going overseas and fighting,” Garner says. “There are life experiences, traveling, meeting incredible people and developing your skills. The military has the opportunity to teach you just about whatever you want to learn.”

In the eight years Garner served in the Army, he learned a lot. He enlisted as a finance specialist. For more than two years, his key responsibilities centered on finance and human resources. He then spent the last five-and-a-half years of his Army service in recruiting.

“I built rapport with people in the community, focusing a lot on relationship building, whether it was at kevin-photocolleges, the town hall or high schools,” he says. “High schools were big because the majority of people enlisting are doing so right out of high school.”

Take Garner himself, who enlisted in the Army at age 18. He sought to pay for his college education and see a bit of the world.

And see the world he did, spending two years in South Korea before returning to the United States.

Garner still cherishes his Army experience, despite its challenges.

“The thing about the military is that you have some things you’re incredibly proud of and other things that were really tough,” Garner says. “Whether it’s being lonely or being away from your family for long stretches, it’s a life-changing experience for everyone that joins, no matter how independent you are.”

Yet the Army bestowed on Garner much more than it took from him. “The Army’s given me many skills,” he says. “It’s given me great friendships that have lasted to this day. And it’s given me leadership skills that set me up for a lifetime of success.”

More than 60 percent of CDL truck drivers are called to serve in the military, just as they’re called to the road. Thank you for your service, veterans.

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military-friendly trucking companies that hire veterans for trucking jobs

After serving our country, many veterans make the transition into the trucking industry, seeking companies who hire individuals with military experience for their truck driver jobs. Many trucking companies enjoy hiring veterans for their driver positions as they embody the motivation and dedication the company is seeking. In the process, these companies are putting veterans on a strong path for the future in civilian jobs while adding disciplined employees to their talent pool.

PTS Worldwide

pts worldwidePTS Worldwide Inc. is a family owned and operated over the road trucking company dedicated to the Department of Defense and the security of our nation. They are fundamentally a people-oriented organization and know that the intelligence, insight, and energy that each individual brings to the job makes them better and stronger as an organization. It is their objective to maintain a working environment where all employees can achieve their fullest potential.

PTS Worldwide, Inc. is a company founded by drivers for drivers and knows they need your skills, enthusiasm, and commitment to achieve our goals together. They run all 48 states from military base to base, and they hire CDL A OTR Team Drivers and OTR Owner Operator Teams nationwide. As a company founded by drivers for drivers, they offer competitive pay with minimum guaranteed miles, generous bonuses, and excellent health and welfare benefits.

Oldcastle

oldcastleAs North America’s largest manufacturer of building products and materials, CDL trucking jobs are just one part of what makes the wheels at Oldcastle turn. But, they are an essential part of the equation. No matter what role a worker plays at Oldcastle, however, one thing is certain. Veterans work at this Atlanta-based company with 2,000 locations nationwide.

“Attracting truck drivers is a huge challenge, so we wanted to promote those opportunities,” says Cindycindyr Reeves, Human Resources Director for Oldcastle, Inc. To attract more military talent to Oldcastle jobs, the company overhauled its website to include a military tab on its careers page. Therefore, when applicants click on the military tab, open job opportunities can be seen, including CDL trucking jobs, engineering and sales opportunities, warehousing jobs and more. Also, the website features a link to help retiring military personnel translate their skills to civilian jobs.

“Our website tells them what job would be a good fit for them,” Reeves says. “It’s a page through military.com with a lot of credibility.”

In addition, Oldcastle launched its military-focused webpages in January 2016, and the company launches other military initiatives this week on Veterans Day. “Attracting veterans serves as an important part of our strategy,” Reeves says. “We wanted to make a place where potential military employees could come and feel welcome and know that Oldcastle has positions that are a strong fit for them.”

hollandHolland

In August 2015, this Holland, Mich.-based company hired Jason Schenkel, an Army veteran, as its talent acquisitions and fair employment manager. It did so specifically to increase its veteran recruiting and outreach.

Schenkel recruits for every position in the company, including CDL trucking jobs. “If I can find a military veteran that fits, I will recruit them for any position in the company,” Schenkel says, estimating that 70% of his recruits are truck drivers. After all, of Holland’s more than 8,000 employees, 6,000 of them are drivers.

Jason Schenkel (center) with his family

Jason Schenkel (center) with his family

Early on, Holland recognized similarities between the trucking industry and military culture in terms of safety, stress, customer service, and hours, Schenkel says. As a result, the military job candidates Holland encounters “have all the intangibles that make for a good truck driver. That’s the way Holland looks at it.”

Being an Army veteran helps Schenkel connect with his audience. “As a veteran, I know the culture, the tempo, the language, the hardships,” he says. “I think it helps me in my work. Holland, from the beginning, has put a lot of time and effort into the veteran initiative. We don’t do it because some government agency says we should. We just feel it’s a good fit for the veterans and for the company.”

exchangeArmy & Air Force Exchange Service

The Army & Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) proudly served America’s armed forces since 1895. Striving to deliver quality goods and services at competitive prices, trucking plays an instrumental part of AAFES’ mission. AAFES commits to hiring veterans, National Guard members and reservists. In fact, veterans compose 12% of the company’s workforce. Overall, the company hires them because of the high value they bring to the organization.

“The AAFES partnered with the National Guard and U.S. Army Reserve…to actively recruit members,” says Col. Karen G. Fleming, Deputy Director, Logistics, for AAFES and herself a 26-year U.S. Army veteran. “We collaborate more than ever with installation transition offices to recruit soldiers and airmen who transition back into the civilian workplace.”

To support its military personnel, The Exchange, as AAFES provides up to 15 days annually of paid leave to guard members or reservists performing military duties that take them away from the job.

AAFES is similar to the military in some respects, Fleming adds, especially in regard to devotion and service. “Their motto is “family serving family,” Fleming says. “In addition, they remain devoted to providing the goods and services to our Army and Air Force.’”

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Called to Serve

kevin-army-photoAs Veterans Day nears, Americans are remembering the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice, or who went off to war and returned forever changed.

After all, the scars of war run deep.

But not all who serve go to war. Those who serve U.S. interests stateside still feel a tremendous call to duty, however, even without battle scars haunting their days.

Drive My Way’s driver recruiting consultant, Kevin Garner, is among the Army soldiers who never went to war. But the U.S. Army veteran still stands strongly for the U.S. Army motto, “This We’ll Defend,” 12 years after his service ended.

“There’s a lot more to the military than going overseas and fighting,” Garner says. “There are life experiences, traveling, meeting incredible people and developing your skills. The military has the opportunity to teach you just about whatever you want to learn.”

In the eight years Garner served in the Army, he learned a lot. He enlisted as a finance specialist. For more than two years, his key responsibilities centered on finance and human resources. He then spent the last five-and-a-half years of his Army service in recruiting.

“I built rapport with people in the community, focusing a lot on relationship building, whether it was at kevin-photocolleges, the town hall or high schools,” he says. “High schools were big because the majority of people enlisting are doing so right out of high school.”

Take Garner himself, who enlisted in the Army at age 18.

He sought to pay for his college education and see a bit of the world.

And see the world he did, spending two years in South Korea before returning to the United States.

Garner still cherishes his Army experience, despite its challenges.

“The thing about the military is that you have some things you’re incredibly proud of and other things that were really tough,” Garner says. “Whether it’s being lonely or being away from your family for long stretches, it’s a life-changing experience for everyone that joins, no matter how independent you are.”

Yet the Army bestowed on Garner much more than it took from him.

“The Army’s given me many skills,” he says. “It’s given me great friendships that have lasted to this day. And it’s given me leadership skills that set me up for a lifetime of success.”

More than 60 percent of CDL truck drivers are called to serve in the military, just as they’re called to the road. Thank you for your service, veterans. Follow us on Facebook today and become part of our family of truckers who are military vets.

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Drive My Way matches drivers with jobs based on their qualifications and lifestyle preferences.

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CDL driver Wall that healsTomy Fox, a company driver and trainer for XPO Logistics Truckload, recalls the son in Joplin, Mo., who never met his father.

Today, that son is a 38-year-old man. And he was standing at the foot of Fox’s truck, tears welling in his eyes.

The Wall That Heals was still in panels in Fox’s trailer, yet to be assembled. But the son knew one thing: His father’s name was on it.

The Wall That Heals is an exact half-scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C. In an outreach effort, the Truckload Carriers Association arranges for drivers to transport The Wall That Heals to areas where people are physically or financially unable to visit the actual Vietnam Memorial. The Wall That Heals, 250 feet long and five feet tall, is assembled by volunteers from city to city.

tomy hat 2When Fox was asked if he’d like to drive the Wall That Heals this summer, he jumped at the chance. For the Vietnam veteran who spent 21 years in the Air Force, it was the honor of a lifetime.

“There are 3.5 million truck drivers in the United States, and I got to do it. That’s, wow,” says Fox, who enlisted right out of high school. “It was a privilege and an honor, and it led me to help the guys to heal. Because that’s what that wall does—it heals. A lot of the guys never had a chance to say goodbye, so this is their chance to pay their last respects.”

The emotion cracks in Fox’s voice as he speaks. After all, he knows that 58,307 names are on The Wall. And he knows they’re not just names.IMG_0198
They’re people.

As Fox drove The Wall through Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Utah, Texas and New Mexico, he had someone special on his mind. “I have a friend on The Wall,” he says. “I thought of him all the time for a month-and-a-half this summer—because I carried him around with me.”

The Wall That Heals evokes that weighty emotion everywhere. Fox can tell who has a loved one on The Wall by the rawness, the slowness of their actions as they approach it.

“They walk up to The Wall and stop, and kind of pause. They kneel down, and then they go,” Fox says. “And that’s why we call it The Wall That Heals. You can see the healing taking place. You see it through the tears, the laughter.”

Fox says he will never forget the warm gestures that brought a tear to his eye as he drove. In Illinois, 140 motorcyclists escorted him into the town of Hoffman Estates. In other places, veterans saluted along the roadside as he passed.

“The way I Iook at it, I had 58,307 souls on the end of my trailer,” Fox says. “I had a cargo of souls. And that’s the way I treated it.”

More than half of CDL truck drivers like Fox are U.S. military veterans. Find the best CDL trucking job for you with Drive My Way. Register today. It’s free.

 

Featured image from Google.com; all other images courtesy XPO Logistics Truckload

File:TravelAmerica truck stop, Maybrook, NY.jpg - Wikimedia Commons On Veterans Day, Wednesday, Nov. 11, TravelCenters of America and Petro Stopping Centers will provide free meals for truck drivers who are also U.S. military veterans. The free meals will be available at any participating TA and Petro sit-down restaurant, the company stated in a press release.

“We are looking forward once again to honoring and thanking the many truck drivers who are also military veterans,” said Tom O’Brien, President and CEO of TravelCenters, in the press release. “They served our country in the military and continue to do so in their current roles as professional drivers.”

On November 11, anyone who is a veteran of the armed forces and holds a CDL can receive a complimentary meal of their choice (up to a $15 value) by simply showing proof of service to their server prior to ordering their meal, the release stated.

Stay tuned to www.drivemyway.com for more veterans-related content in celebration of Veterans Day.

 

Image courtesy of Google.com