Truckers receive free lunches at Bosselman Travel Center

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - Truck drivers are essential personnel during this pandemic, so one group is doing something special to thank them for their hard work.

Bryan Hill is one of 150 truck drivers to receive a free lunch Thursday at Bosselman Travel Center. (Source: Kelsey Dickeson, KSNB)

The Nebraska Trucking Association gave out 150 free lunch vouchers to truckers Thursday at Bosselman Travel Center. They could get Subway, Little Caesars or Krispy Krunchy Chicken inside the food court.

"I can appreciate stuff like this. I mean getting a free lunch, it's nice," said Bryan Hill, a truck driver. "You don't find that everywhere. You don't find it everywhere at all, actually."

Hill has been a truck driver for 20 years. He said he's never experienced anything like this.

"I'm glad that they're open, because some truck stops aren't open as far as restaurants and stuff, and (people) won't even let you use their restrooms. It's crazy," Hill said.

Bosselman's matched the amount of meals the NTA provided to show support for truckers.

Charlie Bosselman, Bosselman Enterprises, said the truck stop is also an essential service.

He said they don't have plans to shut down, and are doing everything they can to stay up and running.

"Without truckers this whole economy, everything is going to shut down. It's a tough situation out there today with the economy. We need these guys out there. It's an important thing that they're doing right now," Bosselman said.

With empty shelves at stores all over the country, Kent Grisham, president of the Nebraska Trucking Association, said the industry is under a lot of stress.

He said regulations have changed during this time so more trucks can be moved with heavier loads, and for longer periods to get more materials out into communities.

"In Nebraska about 50 percent of the communities in the state receive everything they need on a truck alone," Grisham said. "Without the drivers working overtime, and without the teamwork throughout the industry it wouldn't happen."

Grisham said the NTA will continue their "Thank A Trucker" campaign throughout the state. He said they'll be visiting Shoemaker's Travel & Service Center in Lincoln next.