Recently, America celebrated Labor Day — the one (and possibly only) Monday each year that our nation’s workforce agrees is better than the following Friday. Across the country, we smiled and said, “It’s Monday!” instead of resigning to the usual Garfield-the-Cat tone of, “Ugh, it’s Monday again?” In towns and cities all over, we lit our grills, broke out the Wiffle ball and reaped the rewards of our yearlong hard work by kicking back for a day.

And why not? After all, you’ve earned it!

There’s one group of workers, though, that we believe should get a little extra acknowledgment for their hard work: Truckers!

“Give me one good reason,” you say? We’ll do even better. Here are three reasons you should give a trucker a big ol’ hug:

1. You know that tasty hamburger you’re chowing down on for dinner? Yeah. Truckers made that happen.

The trucking industry moves an unbelievable amount of goods each day. According to the American Trucking Association‘s website, “Nearly 70% of all the freight tonnage moved in the U.S.” — or about 9.2 billion tons yearly — “goes on trucks.”

Truck drivers are responsible for getting most of the household items you use each day to stores, supermarkets and other local distributors. We’re talking about everything from the hamburgers, hotdogs, buns, charcoal and grill needed for your recent Labor Day cookout to the dental floss you used to pick the sauerkraut out of your teeth afterward.

By consistently delivering these goods to their destinations, truckers keep the economy moving. Without these drivers, America would be closed for business. Ultimately, then, truckers are the reason we all have jobs.

So, the next time you grill a bunch of freedom-burgers, raise that red Solo Cup to truckers and be thankful you’re not drinking your iced-tea from your own cupped hands.

2. Forget Guardians of the Galaxy. How about the Guardians of the Highway?

While there are many groups that help keep the nation’s roadways safe — from EMTs and police to AAA and many more — it could take several critical minutes for help to arrive in the event of an accident. Fortunately for all of us, there are over three million truck drivers in the U.S. and, among them, a number of heroic men and women who’ve been known to act selflessly as first responders when needed.

One of Roadmaster’s very own, for example, recently helped a fellow motorist out of a dangerous situation. Roadmaster Class A CDL Instructor Anthony Marshall, along with one of his students, witnessed an out-of-control vehicle roll onto its side. Mr. Marshall and his student sprang into action. They ran toward the overturned vehicle, fire extinguisher in hand, busted out the window and pulled the driver to safety.

Such acts of heroism aren’t isolated, either. There have been a number of instances where truckers have saved the day. Just this year, one truck driver was videotaped saving a grandmother and a one year old from a fiery wreck.

Another driver, Michael Hawthorne, is maybe the most seasoned highway life-saver out there. During his 13-year truck-driving career, Mr. Hawthorne has delivered three babies — though we’re not sure if any of the deliveries occurred on “Labor” Day! — saved a child from a tornado just in time, helped a heart-attack victim and aided a motorcyclist suffering from heat stroke.

If you ask Mr. Marshall, though, it seems such bravery is all in a day’s work and that it’s just the type of thing motorists should do for one another. As Mr. Marshall put it, “I would want somebody to do that for me.”

Well, you don’t necessarily have to drive around looking for truckers to save in order to do your part. Instead, the next time you stop to fill your gas tank and you see a truck driver, a simple “thank you” would go a long way toward showing your appreciation.

3. Truckers Have Big Hearts. You Should, Too!

Truck drivers and the trucking community are well known for supporting great causes. Roadmaster Drivers School, for example, has worked with:

Each year, countless truck drivers donate their time, energy, money and use of their trucks to benefit those in need. These truckers are helping to make a difference in communities small and large across the country.

So, let’s recap. Truck drivers keep the economy moving along America’s highways and roads. They keep those roads safe for all of us along their way. And, when truckers get to their destination, they help serve those communities above and beyond their regular shipping duties by giving to charity.

Obviously, truck drivers have big hearts. The least we can do is to #hugatrucker as a way to thank them and to show that we do, too.

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