Veterans at Work at TMC
TMC driver Chase Thornton both delivers to, and protects our country. Chase joined the United States Air Force in 2009 and went on to specialize in security forces. He spent nearly four years stationed at the Tinker Air Force base in Oklahoma City, OK, and completed one deployment to Afghanistan from February to October of 2011.
Upon returning to the States, Chase chose to enlist in the National Guard out of Norman, OK. Here he tackled disasters on the home front, such as assisting with relief work for the 2013 Moore, OK tornado that nearly destroyed the entire city. Eventually, however, Chase found it difficult to maintain steady work, so he decided to attend Roadmaster Drivers School in Tulsa, OK and obtain his CDL. Wanting to remain active in the National Guard, Chase knew he had to find a trucking company that was military-friendly and that would align with his needs. TMC was that company.
Chase was hired on as a professional driver for TMC in January 2015. He was initially concerned about the obstacle of returning to Norman to attend drill one weekend per month and three weeks once during the year, but thanks to his Fleet Manager, Marinee Fulmer, and the rest of TMC’s operations team, he has been able to consistently report for duty.
TMC was appealing to Chase primarily because of the reputation. “Everyone I had spoken to said that TMC takes care of their drivers, making working for them a true privilege,” he explains. “They only hire the best of the best. I saw that as a challenge and I wanted to take it on head first.”
Seven months later, Chase continues to make strides out on the road in his prized black and chrome Peterbilt embellished with an ‘Air Force Veteran’ sticker. “Chase has a strong ‘can-do’ attitude and a positive outlook on just about everything,” says Marinee Fulmer, Chase’s Fleet Manager at TMC. “He adjusts easily to changes in loads, freight and all of the uncertainties that come with the industry. Chase keeps his truck clean, delivers his loads on time, communicates clearly and nearly every time we discuss something either on the phone or via messages he finds a way to make me laugh. He recently took the class to become a trainer and looks to grow within TMC. I enjoy working with Chase and look forward to him passing along his fun disposition with our new drivers.”
In his time with TMC, Chase has found that his military training renders well in the trucking industry. “The military teaches you many things; some that will stay with you forever. The attention to detail is a particularly important one for truck drivers. Whether it is reading your pre-plan, strapping and tarping a load or driving down the road, we always have to keep our head on a swivel and think one step ahead. It can be difficult and stressful, but the military has prepared me to do my job at TMC well.” Above all, Chase says, his military experience has instilled in him respect, hard work and dedication.
Chase continues to stay involved with the 45th HHC BSTB Battalion out of Norman, OK as a military police. Each year he attends annual training where they spend two to three weeks in the field preparing for deployments. As pictured here in Chase’s most recent training tour, he was involved in convoys providing security for a chemical unit that was doing reconnaissance.