C.R. England honors veterans with military-themed trucks

C.R. England adds six new trucks to its Honored Veterans military-themed Fleet. (Left to Right) Drivers: Darryl Wright, Josh Smith, Hardrick Crawford, Chris Yates, Jeremy Jellison, Steve Calder; C.R. England Chairman Dan England (PRNewsFoto/C.R. England, Inc.)

C.R. England, one of the nation’s largest refrigerated carriers, Friday (June 12) honored its military veteran drivers and employees and announced the addition of six new military-themed trucks and two trailers to their “Honored Veterans” fleet, at an event in Salt Lake City.

“Our veterans mean a great deal to C.R. England and we are pleased to honor them,” said C.R. England Chairman Dan England. “C.R. England is dedicated to honoring and recognizing our veteran non-driver and driver employees and independent contractors. We recognize the need to ensure the honored men and women coming out of the military have great jobs, and we consider it a privilege to hire these individuals.  Last year, C.R. England committed to hiring 350 additional veteran drivers. I am pleased to say that we met our goal, and we will continue to be even more aggressive in our hiring efforts.”

Speakers included Dan England, Colonel Gary Harter (Representative for Utah Governor Herbert), Executive Director of the Utah Department of Military and Veteran Affairs; Mayor Ron Bigelow of West Valley City; Rick Goetell, Driver, C.R. England and Army Veteran; and James Rhodes, Director of Schools and Training Standards for C.R. England and also an Army Veteran.

In June 2014, C.R. England introduced five military-themed tractors and trailers into their fleet. Last November, the company introduced five additional tractors and trailers, and each year, the company will add additional military-themed equipment.

During Friday’s event, the new trucks and trailers in the “Honored Veterans” fleet were unveiled. The trucks are 2016 Freightliner Cascadia Evolutions (all with automatic transmissions). The trailers are manufactured by Utility with the new Thermo King Precedent S-600 Trailer Refrigeration System.

Dan England recognized the drivers who would drive in the “Honored Veterans” fleet. Drivers who were candidates for this honor must have had a clean safety record and at least one tour of duty in the military.

Steve Calder – Calder was a Master Sergeant and served in the US Air Force for 22 years. He was awarded three Meritorious Service Medals (MSM) for developing training programs for the Air Force. He completed tours in Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and Germany. Calder has been with C.R. England for a year working in the National division.

Darryl Wright – Wright was a Machinist mate First Class (MM1) and served in the U.S. Navy for 18 years. He was awarded the Navy Marine Corps Achievement Medal for repairs to equipment while on deployment aboard the USS Artic. Wright has been with C.R. England for eight years in the Walmart McCarren Dedicated division. He’s a safety ambassador and qualified trainer.

Jeremy Jellison – Jellison has been with C.R. England for a year and a half and runs in the National division. He was in the US Marine Corps for 13 years and ended his career as a Sergeant. Over that time, he had four deployments, two to Iraq, one to Kuwait, and one to Norway. He was awarded the Iraqi Campaign Medal, Global War on Terrorism Medal, and Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal to include the Presidential Unit Citation.

Chris Yates – Yates was a Sergeant and Tank Commander in the US Army for 12 years. He had two deployments, both in Saudi Arabia during his service, earning a bronze star during each deployment. He also was awarded the Army accommodation medal. Chris works in the National division.

Josh Smith – Smith has been with C.R. England since 2007. He was a trainer for seven years before he became a solo driver for the Georgia Pacific Dedicated division. Smith was a Corporal where he served in the US Marine Corps for four years. He completed tours in Yemen, Afghanistan, and Iraq. He was awarded the Service Deployment Ribbon and National Defense medal for his tours.

Hardrick Crawford – Crawford served in the US Navy as a Seaman Apprentice. He served in Canada and the Philippines. He was awarded the National Defense Ribbon for serving in the Gulf War.  He drives in the National division at C.R. England.

Dan England also noted significant program enhancements the company has implemented in the past year to assist veterans become drivers, as well as groups who have recognized the company for their efforts in hiring veterans.

The Veteran Recruiting Team – This team handles all of the company’s veteran applications. This is a team comprised of veterans who work with veterans looking to work at C.R. England. The team answers questions and discusses career options.

Veterans Support Network – This team is comprised of all branches of the military and all ranks from Lieutenant Colonel and Command Sergeant Major to Private First Class. Many divisions and departments have representation to assist our drivers throughout their career with C.R. England. This includes personnel in operations, recruiting, schools, and training throughout the company.

Career Counselors – They are introduced to drivers from the first day they are in a truck. Their goal is to help drivers find their ideal career that suites their needs. There are veteran career counselors that work with specifically with our veteran drivers.

Additionally, the company recognizes two “Veterans of the Month” who are profiled in the company’s newsletter. Each new hire veteran receives a veteran hat, and at upgrade receives a decal to place on his or her truck and a shirt identifying them as an, “Honored Veteran.”

Student veterans have an orientation the first day of school to help transition from the military into being a student. They learn about what they will experience in school, and what opportunities they have when they graduate. The company also continues to offer tuition incentives. Currently military veteran drivers who finish the program and drive with the company for a minimum of six months receive free tuition.

Recognition for the company includes:

  • Most Valuable Employer from Civilian Jobs magazine for the second year in a row
  • Awarded the 2015 Military Friendly Employer from GI JOBs
  • Recognized for hiring over 50 veterans from the California National Guard Work for the Warriors Silver Award
  • Awarded for The George E. Wahlen Award for Best Veteran hiring program in the state of Utah presented by Congressman Chris Stewart
  • Received the National award from the American Legion for our veteran hires and program. Nominated and recognized in Texas and California for hiring veterans