Q&A with K&J Driver Brian Remington
Brian Remington joined K&J in late 2022, coming to us as part of our acquisition of Midwest Continental, Inc. After 21 years with MCI, Brian was understandably nervous about moving to a new company. But it didn’t take long for the K&J office and shop staff to welcome him with open arms.
“They made me feel a part of the family days into it. When I walked in the door, everybody knew who I was, everybody knew my name. I can't say enough good things about K&J. I love them already,” Brian says.
I had the honor of chatting with Brian recently and getting a glimpse into his life both on and off the road.
Q: How did you get in to trucking?
I always wanted to be a truck driver. I knew from the time I was six that was what I wanted to be. I am a third generation driver, but it was the movies that made me want to drive a truck. BJ and the Bear, Convoy, Movin’ On, Smokey and the Bandit - truck driving was glamorized on those shows and I said, “I want to do that.”
Q: What was your first truck driving job?
I was born and raised in Los Angeles and as soon as I was able to leave, I went up to Montana with nothing but the clothes on my back. The wind chill was 60 below the day I was out in Missoula looking for a job and all I had was a lightweight California jacket. I was even using a towel as a scarf around my face. I had experience in the furniture industry, so I went into a furniture manufacturer with a retail store and asked if they were hiring. The guy looked at me and said, “You’re hired.” When I asked him, “That’s it? You don’t want to interview me or anything?” he said, “If you are dumb enough to be out in this weather, I know you will show up for work every day. I’ll see you Monday.”
When I told him what I really wanted to do was drive truck, he told me they had two trucks and could teach me how to do that. So, it was that job delivering furniture where I really got my experience.
Q: what is your most memorable story oTR?
I picked up a load of meat at Smithfield and when I went to deliver it, we realized that somehow 46 cases of cheese – that’s about 500lbs! – ended up on my truck and no one knew where it came from. Because the receiver hadn’t ordered it, they didn’t want the cheese and told me to donate it. So, I decided to bring it to The Mission. It turned out that Mission's pastor had been praying for cheese and in I walked with 500lbs of it. The power of prayer is truly amazing.
Q: What’s the hardest thing about transitioning to a new company after spending such a long time at MCI?
Every company has its own way of doing things and I’ve been driving truck 35 years now, so I’m kind of set in my ways. It’s hard to teach an old dog new tricks, but I’m working on it.
Q: What is something about truck driving you are proud of?
Winter driving is my specialty. I got all my driving experience in the Northwestern mountains, so I’m very good at driving in the snow. When other guys are shutting down, if there's a safe road open, I’m still going. The customers really like that, they know they can depend on me.
Q: What’s one piece of advice you would give to new truck drivers?
Driving is instinct and you need to practice a lot to develop that instinct. On the road, you can’t take the time to think about it because if you do, the thing has already happened. It has to be instinct. It has to be second-nature.
Driving truck is hard work, there’s no doubt about it. But Brian wouldn’t want any other job. He was born to do this.
"They make truck drivers, and they make everybody else,” he says.
We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Welcome to the K&J family, Brian, we are so happy to have you on board!
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