Kingston has lost a legend. Sixty-eight year old Thurd Jackson, AKA the world’s oldest teenager was diagnosed with cancer in March of 2006, and given two months to live.
Being as how Thurd never did anything by the book in his life, it came as no surprise to anyone when he decided to stick around a little while longer. He passed away in July of 2007.
Thurd was a cool laid-back kind of guy who lived life the way he wanted. He remained single until Dec. 31, 2000 when he married Joanne. Over the years Thurd founded and was president of at least three car clubs. He was also well-known and respected by local truckers and bikers.
To best understand Thurd’s life one only has to remember the “Fonz” from the TV show Happy Days – only Thurd was here first.
The urn containing Thurd’s ashes is a Harley Sportster gas tank with “The Legend” scrolled on the side. This was arranged and the necessary work done to the tank by a couple of former car club members and was donated and painted by Motorsport Plus. How cool is that?
Most of you reading this didn’t know Thurd Jackson and that’s okay. This letter is also about Thurd’s employers.
Kevin Mulrooney formed Mulrooney Trucking in 1952 and sold out to his son in 2004. They have grown to be about a 60 unit aggregate carrier.
When Thurd was diagnosed with cancer in 2006 he told the Mulrooneys that he would like to drive as long as possible. They placed his nearly new tri-axle dump at his disposal, allowing him time off when needed. This truck sat in the yard whenever Thurd was off sick.
In 2007 Thurd wanted to return to work full-time even though he was too weak to do so. He was given a brand new truck, but unfortunately was only able to work for seven days.
In trucking’s competitive market today and with the public image of truckers at an all-time low, this was a class act on Mulrooney’s part.
So this letter is both a salute to a friend and a tip of the hat to the Mulrooney family and its drivers, many of whom along with others helped Thurd when he was at his weakest. This allowed Thurd to do things his way and maintain his dignity.
Rest in peace T.J you will be missed by many.
Truck News is Canada's leading trucking newspaper - news and information for trucking companies, owner/operators, truck drivers and logistics professionals working in the Canadian trucking industry. All posts by Truck News