Roy Williams, Dallas Cowboys

Celebrities in Trucking: Roy Williams Jr.

The trucking industry is huge. When you look at people involved in it, you’ll find people from all walks of life — semi-trucks do not discriminate. Some notable names are Elvis Presley, Richard Pryor, and Liam Neeson.

For one reason or another, big names gravitate to the trucking industry.

Former NFL Pro Bowl WR Roy Williams Jr. began a successful trucking company after retiring

Roy Williams Jr. was one of the best receivers in the NFL for a stretch of time. The former Texas Longhorn pass-catcher played for the Detroit Lions, Dallas Cowboys, and finally, the Chicago Bears before retiring at the conclusion of a seven-year career. He accumulated over 1,300 yards and seven touchdowns in 2006, earning the opportunity to play in the Pro Bowl. He was one of the most reliable players in the league for a long time.

But after retiring, Williams found himself completely bored. Here’s a quote from the former wideout via NBCDFW from 2014, a couple of years after he retired.

“I played golf, I played with my children and I played video games for three weeks,” said Williams. “I could not sit still. I knew nothing about it, knew absolutely nothing about trucking or the oil field. I knew that I loved here in the oil field, but knew nothing about it.”

It was at this point that he decided to enter the trucking industry, starting RDUB Trucking. Unlike former NBA superstar Karl Malone’s trucking business, Williams’s actually took off and found success. As far as I can find, RDUB Trucking is still in commission today, eight years after its inception.

Richard Pryor, Truck Driver

Richard Pryor Was a Truck Driver Before Becoming a Legendary Comedian

The history of famous comedians, actors, and performers with roots in the truck driving industry is actually very well-documented. There are more than a handful of examples of this, including individuals like Chevy Chase, Liam Neeson, and Elvis Presley.

It’s unclear what allows drivers to make this transition. It could just be by pure volume, as an estimated 1% of the US population is made up of truck drivers. It could also be the fact that truck drivers have a lot of time to sit and think — this could help a guy like Elvis write songs or someone like James Cameron hatch ideas for films. Either way, there is no shortage of talent coming out of the trucking industry.

One profession that isn’t surprising to see is that of a comedian. Truck drivers love their jokes and, as mentioned, have ample time to sit and come up with comedy routines.

Legendary comedian Richard Pryor was a truck driver before joining the Army and leaving as an aspiring actor and comedian

Richard Pryor is long gone — the famous comedian passed away in 2005. Still, he’s known as one of the best comedians of all time, earning the nickname “the Picasso of comedy” from Jerry Seinfeld. Pryor won five Grammy Awards in his career.

What most people don’t know about Pryor is that he was a truck driver before entering the Army. This was a long time ago — he was born in 1940 — but he was still a truck driver, nonetheless. theorizes that Pryor may have practiced his comedy routines on a CB radio, though it’s unlikely, as they weren’t popular in trucks until the 1970s.

In fact, it may have been the solitude of driving a truck in the early days of the industry that inspired Pryor to follow a more human-interaction-adjacent career path as an actor and a comedian. At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter what sent him down that career path — it seems like he was destined to be a comedian.

Pryor passed away at age 65.

Haunted Roads, Trucking Halloween

The 5 Most Haunted Roads in the United States

Oftentimes, truck driving jobs are occupied by people who enjoy solitude. Unless you drive with a passenger or a companion, which is allowed by most companies, you’re destined to spend most of your day completely alone. For most drivers, this is something that they really appreciate.

But as we approach the creepiest time of the year, being alone in a semi-truck at night can be terrifying. You now have the added factors of cold weather, drunk drivers, and unstable road conditions. We’re about to give you another reason to be scared as you drive — haunted roads.

That’s right. Houses, hospitals, asylums, and many more things can be haunted — why can’t a road? In fact, there are more haunted roads than you’re probably aware of. Today, we’re going to discuss the five most haunted roads in the United States.

*WARNING: Some backstories have graphic details*

These are the 5 most haunted roads in the US

5. Route 666, New Mexico

I’ll be the first to admit that I am extremely skeptical of those who refer to this highway as being “haunted.” Realistically, this one is probably mental for a lot of drivers. “666” is obviously a spooky number and the fatality rate on this highway is *technically* higher than most highways.

Still, this was enough for the highway to be renamed to “Route 491” and have multiple works of fiction based on it. Again, if we’re being realistic, this highway probably wouldn’t be considered “haunted” if it wasn’t called “Route 666” at one point.

4. Route 375, Nevada

This one is actually less haunted and more… alien-y. The mysterious Area 51 is just off course from this road — many drivers who pass by will look for strange activity in the surrounding area.

Also known as the Extraterrestrial Highway, Route 375 passes by super-secret Area 51, so UFO seekers drive along this road hoping to spot something out of this world. Drivers should keep their eyes on the road while passengers look toward the sky to watch for any mysterious lights or aircrafts.

3. Riverview Dr (Annie’s Road), New Jersey

Annie’s Road goes by the real name “Riverview Drive.” It’s located in Totowa, New Jersey and has a dark history. According to the story, a couple got into a fight when the man kicked the woman out of the car, where she would fall into the street and get hit by a truck. Her dress would snag and she would be dragged by the truck until she died.

Apparently, she still haunts the roads in search of revenge.

To add to the eeriness, there is no phone reception in the area. Witnesses claim that she seems 100% real before completely vanishing.

2. Clinton Rd, New Jersey

Okay… if you’re afraid of ghosts, it might be best to avoid New Jersey at all costs.

In 1983, a cyclist was riding down the road when he spotted vultures attacking something on the ground. Turns out, they were gnawing at the corpse of Daniel Deppner, who was killed by Richard Kuklinski.

Oddly enough, not many people have experienced “hauntings” that relate to Deppner. Instead, there have been reports of a ghost boy, a haunted druidic temple, a ghost truck, and strange hellish creatures.

1. Route 66, Missouri

This is my favorite one on this list.

While there isn’t a specific history on this road, an abandoned truck stop in Villa Ridge is said to be one of the most haunted spots in the US. Still, if you’ve been a truck driver for a long time, you can imagine some of the stuff that happens in a place like this.

The stories of hauntings are pretty well-documented, getting to the point where paranormal investigation teams have visited. Commercial Truck Trader said, “visiting mediums have suggested the truck stop is a portal to the other side of eternity, where souls reenter our world and attach their spirits to truckers whom they might possess in order to drive themselves home.”

Joyride, Peterbilt

2001 Horror Film “Joyride” Featured a Peterbilt 359

The trucking industry is well-represented in films. Unfortunately, it is not always portrayed in the brightest light, with truckers often being the antagonists and, in some cases, the truck itself being the antagonist. A strong example of this is the film Maximum Overdrive, where Emilio Esteves finds himself running from evil, self-aware semi-trucks.

In 2001, we saw another example of this in Joyride, a film that starred Paul Walker.

What starts as a CB radio prank quickly turns into a life-threatening chase for Walker’s character, Lewis Thomas. After pretending to be a woman and tricking a truck driver, the truck driver quickly finds out and soon seeks vengeance. He chases Thomas and other characters in his… you guessed it — Peterbilt 359.

Here are 10 other notable films or TV shows that feature semi-trucks, IMDB

  • White Line Fever (1975)
  • Steel Cowboy (1978)
  • Happy Face Killer (2014)
  • Snitch (2013)
  • Black Dog (1998)
  • Movin’ On (1974-1976)
  • B.J. and the Bear (1978-1981)
  • High-Ballin’ (1978)
  • Smokey and the Bandit (1977)
  • Highjack! (1973)