Witnessing the sunrise in the early hours of the morning always feels like a special treat, but Gene gets to see it all the time. That’s the beauty of driving linehaul – you get to see things that many people only see on occasion. So what has kept Eugene going all these years? Of course the beautiful scenery is a bonus, but the act of driving itself is what Eugene loves! Learn more about Eugene Webb…
A Country Man With a Story to Tell
Gene was born and raised in a very small town in West Virginia called McGraws where his father worked on the railroad and sometimes as a janitor at a school. This quaint little town is way out in the country and only has the essentials – a post office, grocery store, a few school houses, and that’s about it. Gene would often spend his time as a kid riding his bike along the countryside, playing basketball and baseball, or camping for days at a time with his friends.
Growing up out in the country in a small town makes for some great stories. Gene’s best is the one about the time he and his friends ended up helping the Harlem Globetrotters carry their equipment into the arena. They had been so helpful that someone representing the team actually offered them a permanent position as equipment managers for life. He and his buddies were just young guys then and they knew their parents wouldn’t allow it, but they gained that unique experience that now makes for an awesome story.
Before finishing high school, Gene felt that he needed to step up and fight for his country, so he voluntarily enlisted in the United States Army to become an aircraft mechanic and ended up spending a year overseas in Vietnam. After one year and eleven months in the Army, Gene had earned the rank of Specialist 4.
From Army Soldier to Road Warrior
After getting out of the Army, Gene started working for a construction company, which is where he got the idea to become a truck driver. “I figured it’d be more interesting to be driving the truck than shoveling dirt into it,” says Gene. It was in that moment that he realized his passion and decided to go to truck driving school. He has been driving since he was 27 years old and has racked up an incredible safe driving record.
He remembers the very first time it ever occurred to him that trucking could be a beneficial career. Once when Gene was a teenager, he and a few buddies had stopped at a rest stop where they watched as trucks pulled in and out and truckers passed by either going to or coming from their breaks. Gene ended up telling his buddy that he could actually see himself taking up trucking as a career one day.
Eugene started out his adventure with Holland in 1990 at the Indianapolis, Indiana terminal. As a linehaul driver, Gene is certainly a night warrior driving 649 miles a night from Indiana to Minnesota. While he does get to see those beautiful sunrises and sunsets that take his breath away, most of Gene’s driving is done in the dark. Although driving in the dark is not a favorite for some people, Gene finds it to be the most relaxing time for him. His wife even jokes that he’s crazy for driving so much, but the road is really the natural place for Gene to be.
The Quarterback of the Road
Eugene was awarded with the 3 Million Mile Safety Award in March of 2015 for his record of driving 3 million consecutive miles without a preventable accident. What an accomplishment! To drive 3 million miles is more than most of us can imagine, but to do it with so much dedication and commitment to safety is truly a milestone to be proud of.
“You have to be more or less like a quarterback in the game of driving. You have to watch what everybody is doing,” says Eugene on how he achieved his amazing driving record.
When Gene’s not out on the road, you can find him tending to his antique car or attending a car show. Eugene is the proud father of a son, Gene Webb, as well as a stepdaughter and two stepsons. He is also a grandfather to many grandchildren, along with a couple great grandchildren as well. Soldier, driver, husband, father… Eugene Webb exceeds in all of his roles!