Pay It Forward!

Our days on this earth are numbered, so make the best of every opportunity.

In this article, I’m not expressing my usual financial focus but am writing about something much more than just money. Every day we come across people in need and/or distress. Sometimes the only thing they require is a few words of wisdom, instruction, a gentile hand of encouragement or even just a sliver of our talents. It may take only a few minutes out from our day, but together we can add great riches to our lives and other’s lives by helping people out.

It’s not very often I write about my family but, I think today I’ll share an experience. My son drives for a company which is mostly east – west in Canada. He was recently traveling west in Ontario on his way to Winnipeg. It was during the illegal blockades and he had difficulty navigating some fuel supply issues. Sure enough, he ran out of fuel on top of a hill and coasted down to a stop which was, unfortunately, just a few miles from his appointed fueling location. My son is a great driver but does not have a whole lot of experience mechanically. He had hardly popped the brakes when a fellow trucker pulled over in front of him. It was a total stranger!

This seasoned driver offered to help my son move fuel from the reefer to the truck. It quickly became evident that he was highly experienced. As they got set up, the seasoned driver began to tell my son about the engine they were working on to supply fuel to. It had a very peculiar “trick” to priming it. Detailed information flowed like smooth butter and this school for my son continued for about half an hour until it was time to turn the mechanism over. His truck once again roared back to life. My son was elated and asked what the man would like in return for his help. “Just help someone else out when you see they need it” was the gracious reply. The angel jumped back into his truck and disappeared down the road. My son’s day was made a shining beacon of hope in both humanity and for the trucking industry. He was proud to be a driver; and eager to forward the tradition of our industry’s greatness. In less than ten minutes he was at the pumps and secure for the rest of his trip.

Too often the media and “pundits” scourge the transportation industry as divisive, crude and crass. It often relates information in a manner that will affect the way we think of the business we are in; and we are too often an easy target because we are so large and intimidating on our highways. We are an obvious, easy mark. However, the truth is, drivers are very often gentile giants on our roads with hearts as big as their trailers. Drivers are more often chivalrous than dangerous and rarely are we noted for it.

Too many in our industry think that chivalry was pushed off the road decades ago. I disagree! Though the faces in our seats have changed color, our hearts have not cooled. This man who trained a youth (my son) had a strong accent and was clearly an immigrant. All cultures have great people in them and last week (from the date I wrote this article) our roads were shown again how wonderful the individual people in this industry are and can be.

About the Author:
Robert D. Scheper is a leading Accountant and Consultant to the Lease/Owner operator industry in Canada. His first book in the Making Your Miles Count series “taxes, taxes, taxes” was released in 2007. His firm exclusively serves Lease/Owner Operators across Canada. His second book “Choosing a Trucking company” is the most in-depth analysis of the operator industry available today. He has a Master degree (MBA) in financial management and has been serving the industry since he and his wife came off the road in 1993. His dedication, commitment and strong opinions can be read and heard in many articles and seminars.

You can find him and his books at or 1-877-987-9787. You can also e-mail him at

About Robert Scheper

Robert D Scheper operates an accounting and consulting firm in Steinbach, Manitoba. He has a Masters Degree in Business Administration and is the author of the Book “Making Your Miles Count: taxes, taxes, taxes” (now available on CD). You can find him at and or at 1-877-987-9787. You can e-mail him at: