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Trucking for Veterans

Bright and early Monday morning three big rigs pulled in to the Outdoor Venture Corporation parking lot in Stearns to pick up a shipment for the United States Customs Agency.

There is something different about the trio of white cabs pulling flatbeds: all three are adorned with a logo consisting of five stars, a pair of veterans and a slogan that defines their purpose: “We got your six and your 12.”

Rob Hubbard and his two other drivers, Jeremy Lowe and David Buffin are all three veterans of the Kentucky National Guard who served in Iraq. OVC employee Brain Green served with them as well, and was one of the first to greet the truckers as they pulled in.

Hubbard owns Packard Transportation Incorporated, and he uses his fleet of trucks to raise awareness of veterans and to help find employment for the men and women who have served our country.

He says their mission is simple.

“It’s more than just honoring our veterans, it is taking care of our veterans,” he said.

After serving in the military, Hubbard says he knows first hand how some veterans can come home from active service to find themselves trying to lead a normal life again. Many times the returning heroes are forgotten about and struggle to find employment.

“When they raise their hand they say ’whatever you need,’ for their country,” Hubbard said. “You don’t throw that away when you’re done.”

Packard is teaming with Swift Transportation to help veterans earn their Commercial Drivers License, and provide training once obtained.

The goal is to help as many veterans as they can find jobs, and give something back to them for their service.

Hubbard and his crew are particularly mindful of disabled vets, knowing that their sacrifice on the battle field can make it harder to earn a living so they make sure there is a place for them with Packard.

The cabs are equipped with the latest in technology and comfort, almost making it an apartment on wheels.

But they can also be outfitted with special equipment designed to help accommodate drivers with disabilities.

“We keep our hearts open and realize there are veterans hurting out there. If we can help one, that makes a difference,” Hubbard said.

While working with other organizations, such as the Wounded Warrior Project, Hubbard and his team grew disenfranchised with the larger groups, noting much of the money raised does not go directly to help wounded veterans and decided they would focus their efforts in their own way.

After a brainstorming session, Hubbard and his crew came up with their new logo showing a kneeling Vietnam veteran, covering the rear, while a Gulf War veteran stands and watches ahead; linking the past and the present. The five stars represent each branch of the military while their motto reflects the grouping of past and present.

The veterans of the Vietnam era and before covers the Country’s “six”, while the modern vets have the “twelve” – looking forward.

OVC President J.C. Egnew was also on hand to greet the crew, thanking them for their service and their efforts to help veterans.

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