It’s not every day that you see a pink concrete mixing truck on construction job sites.
For Vicky Long, it’s been her everyday ride for the past five years, but the novelty stands for something bigger than herself.
Long works for Team Elmer’s out of Traverse City. As the only female driver, she had joked with her boss, Tonya Wildfong, co-owner of Elmer’s about painting her rig pink. Wildfong called her bluff and agreed to the paint job provided the truck was used with a higher purpose in mind. Now, it’s a staple attraction at breast cancer awareness events in the Traverse City area. The first year in commission, Team Elmer’s ran a fundraiser, donating money to the Women’s Cancer Fund at Munson Medical Center when people spotted the truck out and about.
Long said she hasn’t personally been impacted by breast cancer, but has really come to appreciate survivors and their loved ones who are compelled to share their stories when they see her with her truck at events and when she’s out and about.
“I like to hear the good ones, where they survived,” Long said. “I hate to hear the ones they lost.”
Wildfong said Long is tireless in her promotion of early detection through self-exams and mammograms.
“She really cares and feels deeply and is with everyone at that event,” she said.
Employees of Team Elmer’s who did have a personal connection to breast cancer were touched by the pink truck, Wildfong said.
“Nowadays, everyone knows someone who’s been affected by it,” Wildfong said. “Anything that we can do to promote early detection and raise awareness, we’re happy to do it.”
The Team Elmer’s pink cement mixer has several upcoming appearances. Check it out at Paint the Town Pink in downtown Manistee on Oct. 8, Bras for a Cause in Traverse City on Oct. 9, or at the Buckley Volleyball pink game on Oct. 13. Come out and support the work that Long and Team Elmer’s are doing to raise breast cancer awareness.
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