Goodyear names three finalists for annual Highway Hero Award

Finalists for Goodyear’s Highway Hero Award (from left): Mark Cavanagh, Julian Kaczor and Dorian Cole.

Three truck drivers who helped other motorists in peril are finalists for a major national award that recognizes their heroics.

The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company will announce the winner of the 33rd Goodyear Highway Hero Award on Thursday, March 31, during the Mid-America Trucking Show in Louisville, Kentucky.

Established in 1983, the Goodyear Highway Hero Award honors truck drivers who put themselves in harm’s way to help others.

Finalists for the 33rd Goodyear Highway Hero Award include:

Mark Cavanagh

Mark Cavanagh, a driver from Hillsville, Virginia, who was driving his truck through Pennsylvania when he saw another tractor-trailer drive off the road and roll down a hill. The truck’s driver was ejected from the rig and was hanging from its mirror bracket by a belt. Cavanagh stopped his truck, descended down the hill, cut the injured driver’s belt, and pulled him away from the damaged truck. He then helped the driver back to the road. Cavanaugh drives for Celadon.

Dorian Cole

Dorian Cole, a driver from Los Angeles, California, who was driving through the Sylmar section of Los Angeles when he saw a Los Angeles Police Department motorcycle officer collide with another motorcyclist. The impact from the collision caused the officer to hit a concrete divider. To protect the injured officer from oncoming traffic, Cole positioned his tanker truck across several highway lanes. This also gave paramedics unimpeded access to the officer. Cole drives for Pacific Tank Lines.

Julian Kaczor

Julian Kaczor, a driver from Utica, New York, who was driving through Jacksonville, Florida, when a car drove past him at a high rate of speed, nearly clipping his truck. The car crashed into a construction barrier and began to emit smoke. Kaczor ran to the car as it became engulfed in flames, which he tried to extinguish. As the fire intensified, he forced the car’s driver side door open, pulled the injured driver out of the vehicle, and dragged him to safety. Kaczor is an owner/operator.

The winner will receive a special ring, a cash award and trophy. Each of the other finalists will receive a cash prize and other items.

“The Goodyear Highway Hero Award is the oldest and most prestigious honor of its kind,” said Gary Medalis, Goodyear marketing director. “Goodyear is proud to recognize truck drivers who risk their own well-being to save people from dangerous situations.”

Trucking industry journalists are now evaluating the above finalists and will select the Goodyear Highway Hero Award recipient.