Musical Contractor Turned Professional Driver
We are proud to introduce a new Skyline Driver: meet Kent Jones.
Kent grew up in the Detroit area . He served in military for three years then became a general contractor, doing mostly remodels, reconstruction and restoration. Kent says he always wanted to move to Tennessee.
“My wife and I are both musicians – I play guitar and my wife, Becky, plays piano. We play and write gospel music. We lived Nashville for a while, moved back to MI then to Knoxville because my wife wanted to attend the University of Tennessee for music.”
The road that brought Kent to truck driving was unfortunately paved with injuries. “I suffered some injuries resulting from many years of construction work. Soon, my physical limitations forced me out of construction. I went through the Veteran Affairs hospitals, through physical and work rehabilitation in Knoxville called the “Ticket to work” program. I needed to find a new career where my physical limitations wouldn’t affect job performance. I’m not inactive, I can take care of myself and my health and I can drive and handle a truck.”
Kent fought hard to get back to health and back to work. He heard about Skyline on the radio.
“I talked to the American Job Center of Tennessee and they told me about the Tennessee Truck Driving School but right away, I didn’t like the sound of that. I wanted to know where I’d work once I obtained my CDL. That’s when I heard Skyline’s radio ad – about being a family-owned business. I instantly had a good feeling about it. I learned that spouses can go over road and I’d be home on weekends, but it’s the family-oriented culture that really resonated.”
Kent went through Skyline’s zero-tuition CDL training program and graduate program. “The experience was outstanding and all three of my trainers were fantastic. Mike (Garrabrant) is excellent, every day my feelings of intimidation grew into feelings of confidence. It was that way with Rick (Arnold) and Landon (Burnette). All three are great at what they do, they really teach you what you need to go out there and be a safe, professional driver.”
Even though he said there were a lot of little details to remember, Ken said he was ready to cut the reigns and get out on his own. “I’ve always been a very safety conscious and alert driver. Even though there’s a big difference in size, I’m confident backing and using mirrors from all the construction equipment I operated.”