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Linda: We met at age 15 and have been together ever since, so we tell people that basically we’ve been married our whole lives. I was working as a hairdresser, and Larry was working at a mill when our son graduated from high school, and we decided that we wanted to spend more time together. We like to travel and get out and go, so we thought driving a truck would be the thing.
Larry: When we started we didn’t know anybody in the business, and it was hard to find anyone who would tell us the truth about the business. I sat down and did all the figuring on miles and money. As far as travel, well you get to see what trucking allows you to see. I got into it for the money, honestly — owner-operators were making good money then and still are.
Linda: We got our CDLs, got a job with Boyd Brothers and took to it right away. We were there six months to get the training of being on the road before we got our own truck and started with Fikes Truck Line. You have to have a decent nest egg to get started as an owner-operator. It’s a big undertaking to be able to manage the money end of it. But we went ahead and did it, leaned on each other and it all worked great.
Larry: Life on the road is just life, but in tight quarters. A woman probably has to adapt more to it. She has no dressing room — no place to do her hair and makeup. But Linda, she’s a country girl, so it didn’t take her long.
Linda: We get along great. Trucking is a tiring, wearing job. You have to run to make a living and have to have a business head to make money at it. We run hard enough to make it. Our son saw how we were doing and went out on the road with his dad sometimes and decided he liked it, too. As soon as he could buy his own truck, he did and now he’s with Fikes, too.
Larry: Our son lives across the road from us. We both race stock cars on a dirt track, and all weekend long we’ll race, work on our trucks and, of course, the ins and outs of trucking is always a big part of our conversations.