Sad news to report today with the death of Donald B. Lockridge, father of award winning broadcast journalist and my friend Evan Lockridge.
Mr. Lockridge was 94 when he passed away Tuesday, January 29, 2013 surrounded by his family.
Donald Lockridge was one of the last pioneers of the trucking industry, having been president of several major trucking companies in the Southeast. He was affectionately known as “Hoss” by friends and employees.
He began his career in trucking more than a half century ago as a truck driver and worked his way up to management. During his career he was president and general manager of Bowman Transportation Inc., East Gadsden and Atlanta; general manager of Valley Copperstate in California; president and general manager of Deaton Truck Lines, Birmingham; and general manager of TT Brooks in Ohio. He took a brief respite from trucking in the late 1970s and was owner of Western Auto in Leeds, before returning to trucking, where he served as a consultant to several carriers in the state of Alabama, finishing his career as a freight broker, working into his 80s.
I Am My Father’s Legacy
I am my father’s legacy.
I shudder at the thought.
Though all my life I’ve tried to do
What my daddy said I ought.
He set for me high standards
And didn’t let me slack.
Whenever I veered off the trail,
My dad, he brought me back.
Dad was ever constant with me–
Even when he wasn’t there.
His presence felt, the lessons learned,
Foundation laid with care…
Alone, amid decisions,
My father’s words rang true,
“Son, use your head,” and “Make me proud.”
That always got me through.
More precious than the words he spoke,
Though came them from his heart,
The life he lived before this child,
His example did impart.
Dad talked the talk, then walked the walk,
Which showed me it could be.
Now I, the dad, live out my life
Before my progeny.
I am my father’s legacy,
Which isn’t him nor me,
But godly, living out each day
In all integrity.
Mr Lockridge was a WWII veteran, having served honorably for his country in the U.S. Navy. Having traveled throughout the world during his service and honorably discharged in December 1945.
He was a devoted University of Alabama football fan. He was a member of the Moody United Methodist Church, where he served in a number of administrative positions.
Mr. Lockridge is survived by his devoted wife of 49 years, Glenda Ratliff Lockridge of Moody, Ala., son Donald A. Lockridge and wife Martha, grandson Brett Lockridge and wife Johnnie Lockridge, and great grandson Blake Lockridge; daughter Kay Rozelle and husband Larry Rozelle, granddaughter Katie Rozelle, grandson Larry Rozelle II, and great granddaughter Kaylyn Rozelle; son Evan E. Lockridge and wife Deborah Lockridge and granddaughter Capra Lockridge. He was loved by all and will be missed by many.
Graveside services will be held Friday, Feb. 1, 1:00 p.m. at Jefferson Memorial Gardens in Trussville, Ala., with Brian Wyatt officiating, a former pastor of Mr. Lockridge.
He will be buried with military honors, for his country was very important to him as he fought for it. And there’s no sound he liked better than hearing Taps.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Mr. Lockridge’s memory to the Big Oak Boys’ Ranch, P.O. Box 507, Springville, AL 35146.
On a personal note, I think the poem on the right could well describe Donald Lockridge’s legacy which lives on with his son, Evan Lockridge, a great friend to the trucking industry and many of us in it.