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Trucking Industry Recognized for its Vital Role in Transporting the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree
Last night, representatives from the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) watched proudly as the 2015 U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree was lit on the West Lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., followed by a private congressional reception at the U.S. Botanic Garden. TCA is an official sponsor of “The People’s Tree,” so representatives from the organization were thrilled to hear U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) publicly recognize and thank the trucking industry for its involvement in transporting the tree.
Murkowski, along with Senator Dan Sullivan (R-AK), also recognized John Schank, the professional truck driver from Lynden Transport who drove the tree over 4,400 miles. Schank, who has logged five million miles on the highway, is the 2014 recipient of the Alaska Trucking Association’s Driver of the Year award.
“Each time John was mentioned, we heard a roar and loud round of applause from the audience,” said Debbie Sparks, TCA’s vice president of development. “It’s exciting to have the trucking industry associated with such a patriotic thing as the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree. Trucking seems to be making a positive turn!”
TCA was recognized as one of the lead sponsors of the tree, along with Shell, Lifetouch Photography, and Alaska Airlines. TCA not only hosted a whistle stop in Ohio as the 74-ft. Lutz Spruce made its way across the United States, but also helped to sponsor the post-tree-lighting reception.
“At the holidays, it’s great to see the government and private sectors coming together on projects like this that mean so much to people,” said Bruce Ward, founder and president of Choose Outdoors, the non-profit organization that oversees the tree. “It’s even better that taxpayers do not have to pay for the tree’s transport due to the generosity of sponsors like TCA.”
The 2015 tree made history in that it traveled further than any previous tree and is the only one that was transported via multiple modes of transportation: by both boat and truck. This tree was also the first one to be lit by the new speaker of the house, Paul Ryan.
The Capitol Christmas Tree has been a tradition at the U.S. Capitol since 1964. It will be lit from dusk until 11 p.m. each evening throughout the holiday season. The full display includes smaller companion trees and thousands of ornaments created by Alaskan schoolchildren.
For pictures depicting the journey of the 2014 Capitol Christmas Tree and how it was hauled across country, visit CapitolChristmasTree.com. For further information on TCA and its activities, please visit www.truckload.org and follow the organization on Facebook—truckload.org/Facebook—and Twitter—truckload.org/Twitter.
To view photos from the tree lighting event, visit our Flickr album.