Friday, May 21, 2010 – A charity fund that helps truck drivers obtain medical procedures at reduced costs received a shot in the arm this week when the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association donated $10,000 toward the cause.
The money goes to the St. Christopher Truckers Development & Relief Fund – a Knoxville, TN-based nonprofit group headed by President Doug McElhaney, Executive Director Donna Kennedy and Treasurer John McElligott, M.D.
The donation was made in the name of Jasmine Jordan, who also goes by Jazzy. Jazzy is the 17-year-old daughter of OOIDA Life Members Lee and Paulette Jordan, and she is running from California to New York to raise awareness of truckers who lack medical insurance and to raise money for the St. Christopher Truckers Development and Relief Fund. As of Friday, May 21, Jazzy was in Virginia and less than 400 miles from her goal of running coast-to-coast.
“We know Jazzy has been up against a lot of obstacles these past several months and we are honored to be able to recognize what she has done,” said Norita Taylor, media spokesperson for OOIDA. “We’d like to challenge our members to contribute any amount they possibly can in Jazzy’s name as well.”
Lee Jordan said he was in tears when OOIDA President Jim Johnston told over the phone about the donation.
“It’s just incredible,” said Lee. “To have done it in Jazzy’s name is just so awesome.”
OOIDA has been a sponsor of the St. Christopher Fund in the past and continues its support in the name of Jazzy as she gets closer to her goal of reaching New York City on foot. She started her run in California in September 2009, and her father escorts her alongside in their pickup truck.
Daily updates appear on her Facebook fan page detailing her progress. She has faced foot injuries, illnesses and most recently a collision with an automobile that rear-ended her father’s truck as she was preparing for her daily run. All of this while she still keeps up with homework from her hometown school in Minnesota.
The St. Christopher Fund is faced with hardships as trucker applications for assistance increase daily and funds are needed to keep up with the need. Jazzy was inspired to start her run across America when a close friend and employee of her parents’ trucking company died last year after battling cancer.
SCF also conducts health research to benefit professional drivers and the trucking industry.