the last word

Big-rig ride For 1,000 smackers, former Mayor Dennis Maetzold of Edina, MN, and businessman Richard Peacha of Bloomington, MN, got to take a 251-mile jaunt in a tractor-trailer donated by Freightmasters as part of an auction held in November to support the charity group Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People (VEAP). Ron Have, president of Eagan, MN-based Freightmasters, who serves on VEAP's board of

Big-rig ride

For 1,000 smackers, former Mayor Dennis Maetzold of Edina, MN, and businessman Richard Peacha of Bloomington, MN, got to take a 251-mile jaunt in a tractor-trailer donated by Freightmasters as part of an auction held in November to support the charity group Volunteers Enlisted to Assist People (VEAP).

Ron Have, president of Eagan, MN-based Freightmasters, who serves on VEAP's board of directors, came up with the big-rig ride idea for the auction — an auction that netted $90,000 for VEAP. All told, Maetzold and Peacha paid roughly $4 a mile for their big rig experience.

Fleet names we love

Stage Call Specialized Transportation
Apache Junction, AZ

Denso reaches out

The Denso North America Foundation has pledged to donate $25,000 to the American Red Cross Chapter of Jackson, TN, to aid persons there affected by the tornadoes of Feb. 5. Jackson was one of the communities hardest hit by the mid-winter tornadoes and is home to Denso's TBDN Tennessee Co. Denso also operates two other firms in the state — Denso Manufacturing Tennessee in Maryville and Denso Manufacturing Athens Tennessee in Athens. “We hope we can help some of the families, businesses and communities recover from this devastation,” says Hiroshi Kitahara, exec. vp of Denso International America.

Road Raider

Christened the “Raider Avalanche,” this black 2005 Chevrolet Avalanche celebrates key historic team milestones, as well as several Hall of Fame players, through custom artwork created by national airbrush champion Mickey Harris. Custom body shop Malibucustomz, founded and owned by Rick Spears, transformed the truck into a work of art in just six days for avid Raiders fan Tom Coke of Knoxville, TN. All four sides of the truck and its hood feature graphics and portraits of famous Raiders such as team owner Al Davis, legendary player Jim “Mr. Raider” Otto, and famed former coach and sports announcer John Madden.

Anchors aweigh!

When the U.S. Naval Academy (USNA) needed a more efficient way to haul its football team's gear to away games, it opted to purchase its first Class 8 — a new Freightliner Cascadia strikingly dressed in the blue and gold colors of Annapolis. “We needed a truck that could handle a lot of different uses while also being the most efficient, productive and drivable available,” says Syd Rodenbarger, director of business services for USNA. “We also wanted it to look really impressive.”

Rodenbarger had previously rented multiple vehicles, including a 24-ft. straight truck to haul the Mids' equipment, not to mention everything needed by its 150-member Drum & Bugle Corps. Clearly, a big rig was needed but so was research. “Based on the Academy's rules and regulations, we are required to competitively shop for new purchases,” Rodenbarger says. “The decision came down to fuel economy and reputation. We should have done this a long time ago,” he adds.

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