USA Truck CEO offers update on his health

John Simone, the chief executive officer of USA Truck, late last week updated the company and the public on his considerable health issues, which forced him to take a medical leave in April.

In a letter, posted Thursday (May 7) on the company’s website, Simone said that in March he suffered several strokes. He said the strokes — cerebral vascular accidents (CVAs) — primarily affected his speech, which he said is  “much improved since then.”  Simone explained his doctors expect him to make a full recovery from the CVAs.

USA Truck’s CEO John Simone

However, while looking for the cause of the strokes, Simone said his doctors found he also had lung cancer. And, he explained the treatments:

“I have been undergoing chemotherapy, and radiation treatments are planned in the future. The treatments are expected to continue for several more weeks. It is too early to have complete visibility on timeframe for completing treatments or a definitive prognosis, but my doctors and I are optimistic. Needless to say, this dual challenge multiplied the number of tests, appointments, and treatments to the point a medical leave became necessary.

“Several weeks into the treatments, I am feeling much better. My strength is returning, my speech is improving, and I am looking forward to returning to active involvement in the business. My doctors have not finalized their recommendations on my ability to travel or return to USA Truck in a full time capacity. I intend to return as soon as medically advisable, and I am hoping that will be sometime this summer.”

When Simone took a medical leave in early April, USA Truck’s board of directors appointed director Thomas Glaser as interim chief operating officer. Glaser previously served as president of Celadon Trucking Services, Inc. and Arnold Transportation Services, Inc.

Based in Van Buren, Ark., USA Truck provides truckload, dedicated contract carriage, intermodal and brokerage spot market services throughout North America.

Recently, USA Truck added two words — Capacity Solutions — to its distinctive red, white and blue logo.

Russell Overla, the company’s executive VP for truckload operations told the Arkansas Online website:

“We’re certainly not trying to change the name or the history here. It’s changing the perception of being just a truckload carrier. We want to make sure that if you’re looking for a way to move freight, a freight solution, we want to make sure you’re looking at us for all of our opportunities that we could provide.”

USA Truck, which ranks 50th in Commercial Carrier Journal’s Top 250 list, also recently announced the sale of 1,739,131 shares of its common stock.