TORONTO, Ont. – Merv Connolly is fast becoming one of the most decorated individual truck drivers in the business. The 56-year-old owner/operator with L.E. Walker Transport took home the Ontario Trucking Association/Volvo Trucks Canada National Driver of the Year Award Nov. 16. The award recognizes a driver who holds a collision-free driving record and demonstrates and high level of courtesy both on and off the road. The presentation by was made during the OTAs 80th annual convention at the Toronto Congress Centre.
Connolly had previously won the OTAs provincial Driver of the Year Award in 2005. Though the industry veteran has earned a great deal of respect as a safe driver – having amassed nearly five million collision-free kilometres over 38 years – he has also gained notoriety for his lifesaving efforts, helping lift a vehicle off a trapped man and assisting a passenger who had been ejected from the vehicle following an accident in January 2005.
Connolly’s efforts during the accident were not overlooked by the province, as he was awarded the Ontario Provincial Police Commissioner’s Citation for Lifesaving. He also was Truck News most recent recipient of the Owner/Operator of the Year Award at the Fergus Truck Show in July. These awards went along with the recognition he had already received from the Ontario Safety League for his long years of accident-free driving.
Its very nice to be up here. Its a great honour, said a humble Connolly during the OTA ceremony, with wife Donna by his side. Im not a very good speaker, I stumble a little bit, but I can drive real good.
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