Truckers Show “Big Heart” To Help Special Needs Boy Who Loves Big Rigs
Kahoka, Missouri – A 6-year-old boy from a small town in Missouri loves big trucks and truckers, and truckers are returning the love in a big way.
Earlier this month, Transportation Nation Network (TNN) told you the story of how a group of truckers joined together to surprise little Bentlee McGeehon after his mother, Alisha Leasman-McGeehon, reached out to friends and a few trucking groups on Facebook.
She asked truckers to send pictures of big rigs to cheer her son up.
She wrote, “He (Bentlee) broke his femur and had to rods put in his leg and now they think he had a stroke at some point. He would love to cover a wall in with different kinds of semis.”
Alisha said Bentlee, who has “special needs,” calls semi-trucks “beep beeps,” and gets a thrill out of truckers honking their horns for him.
After posting about Bentlee on social media, hundreds of truckers began replying with pictures of big rigs.
A group of truckers even had a special day for Bentlee earlier in July and called it “Beep Beeps For Bentlee.”
Click HERE to read more about the first ever “Beep Beeps For Bentlee.”
Beep Beeps For Bentlee 2
Alisha’s post also caught the attention of trucker Greg Anderson.
Anderson is the president of the grassroots trucker group, Black Smoke Matters (BSM), but more importantly, he too has a special needs son.
“His story touched my heart,” Anderson tells TNN. “I know firsthand the costs and the expenditures.”
Anderson’s son, Austin, was diagnosed with a rare brain condition as a young child, and Anderson says his family’s life was forever changed.
“From that point on it was doctor visits two or three times a week sometimes requiring we travel across the country,” he recalled.
Anderson expressed he was fortunate to have a stable business with proper medical insurance or he might have “lost everything.”
Wanting to lend support to the McGeehons, he reached out to Alisha with a simple message.
“I know what you guys are going through. I understand the tough times,” he told her.
Anderson mentioned it to other leaders in BSM and he says everyone quickly got excited about a second “Beep Beeps For Bentlee.”
MORE TRUCKERS GIVING BACK
On Saturday, August 3, 2019, Anderson hopes dozens of truckers will join him for another special day to celebrate Bentlee.
The plan is to meet at the Flying J Travel Plaza in Wayland, MO (102 Fore Drive) at 11 a.m.
From there, Anderson and a group of truckers will convoy approximately 10 miles to Kahoka while Bentlee rides shotgun in Anderson’s truck, leading the way.
Anderson says once the group reaches its destination they will have a BBQ cookout in Bentlee’s honor.
It doesn’t end there though.
Anderson is seeking to raise money for Bentlee’s parents, David and Alisha, to help with Bentlee’s recent and ongoing medical expenses.
BSM is asking anyone who would like to support Bentlee to donate HERE.
More Joining The Cause
A newly started grassroots truckers advocacy group, United American Truckers Association, is also joining in the event and fundraising efforts.
UATA says its mission is “standing up for the rights of the American trucker” as well as, “contributing to children’s charities and within the community.”
UATA is raffling off a Blue Parrott 550 Bluetooth Headset, with all proceeds going to benefit Bentlee’s family.
On the group’s website, they write:
David, Bentlee’s dad, works 60+ hours a week in a factory job, comes home scraps and works on cars to make it possible for Alisha to stay home with the kids. Daycare cost would kill them otherwise, transportation, daily bills, all catch up to this family while caring for Bentlee.
A raffle ticket is $5.00. To learn more about the raffle, click HERE.
It’s efforts like this one that Anderson says reveals the true heart of truck drivers.
“We as truckers have a big heart I think its important we all give back and do positive things for the community. It’s important we shine some positive to lift each other up,” he commented.
Anderson believes its more important than ever to give back and hopes events like Beep Beeps For Bentlee will “get people focused on what’s really important.”
If you are interested in participating and want to get in touch with Anderson directly, he encourages you to call him at 502-835-1218.
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