I was on another one of my many cool-barn hunts when I stumbled across this magnificent beast-that-was. Tucked away, covered in weeds and brambles, there he crouched. I could almost hear his once-proud roar … waiting, straining at the bit to eat up the highways just one more time.
Not a clue what happened or why he was there. He didn’t seem to be in that bad a shape, but I didn’t look too closely, preferring instead to believe that whatever unfortunate circumstance landed him where he was, all would be forgiven and he’d once more growl to life, hauling product to markets on the broad open road from the Atlantic to the Pacific again some day.
I have a true soft spot in my heart for truck drivers. I used to be a CB’er. Yes, truth time. I really was, and no, I won’t tell you my handle. But suffice it to say, I can tell you for a fact that there ARE many true gentlemen and gentle-ladies behind the wheels of those big things you see barreling down on you on the interstates. Please give them their due … give them respect.
So to my big handsome blue friend I say, rock on, buddy, rock on.
I believe this is a Diamond Reo truck … but can’t tell you the year or model. Wikipedia has this to say about him:
“Diamond Reo Trucks was an American truck manufacturer. In 1967, Diamond T and Reo Trucks were combined to form the Diamond Reo Trucks Division of the White Motor Corporation. Reo dated back to 1904 when Ransom E. Olds, founder of Oldsmobile, began building motor cars, and Diamond T dated back to 1905 when C.A. Tilt began building vehicles.
In 1971, Francis L. Cappaert of Birmingham, Alabama, bought Diamond Reo from White. And, at about the same time the Diamond Reo C-116 series was introduced, which featured Cummins NTC-335, NTC-350, NTA-370 and Detroit Diesel 12V-71N engines. Despite new model introductions and excellent reputation Diamond Reo was forced into bankruptcy on December 6, 1974.
One year later Loyal Osterlund and partner Ray Houseal bought the rights to Diamond Reo trucks and made room to continue production in their Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, facility, originally a dealership and maintenance facility. The single model C-116 Giant was continued in production with the Cummins NTC-290 diesel engine as standard power. Production for 1978 was 131 units. By 1985, the Harrisburg plant was expanded to be able to produce 10 trucks per day, although output continued at about two per day. The company continued to build about 150 Class 8 trucks annually through 1995.”
For all I know, he still waits … today, probably covered in snow and ice in addition to the itchy weeds. Hats off to ya buddy … I’m sure you worked hard in your day and deserve your rest.
As always, clicking on the image will bring you to my website where you can see the Road Warrior in larger size, better resolution and less nasty watermark. And as always, I’d love to hear from you. Make sure you’ve clicked on the title of this little story and scroll down to the comments section.
And … rock on!!