Comfortable while stuck at home? You can thank truck drivers

From electronics and books to food and toilet paper, you can thank truck drivers for keeping us healthy, happy, and entertained during the pandemic.

The North Carolina Trucking Association claims 85.6 percent of North Carolina communities depend exclusively on trucks to move their goods.

But a legendary North Carolina truck driver rejects the 'hero' label.

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"I consider it doing my job. Being a hero is very warming to your heart for anyone but, you know, heroes are the ones that save lives," said Ingrid Brown of Watauga County.

We spoke with Brown by Skype from the cab of her truck in Florida.

After 40 years and more than 4,000,000 miles behind the wheel she says she's never seen anything like what COVID-19 has done to America.

Take, for example, when she recently left New York City.

"When you cross the G.W., the George Washington bridge it can usually take you two hours to get across it," she said after sending a picture of the bridge taken with her truck's dashcam.

"It's 8:03 in the morning on a Thursday morning and there's nothing."

She said when she looked at later, it shook her.

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"It was like reality sunk in. It was literally like, 'Oh, my gosh, this is real.'"

Not long after that she was visiting other hot spots from coast to coast.

She picked up a load of apples in Washington state last week to deliver to Florida.

And while social distancing is easy on the road, it's harder when truck drivers make deliveries.

Especially when you consider truck stops have been out of cleaning supplies and protective gear for weeks.

"I've had nothing, no Clorox wipes, no disinfectant, no hand sanitizers, no masks, no gloves," she said.

But at least she has had heard the shout-outs being given by people like Leslie Sarasin, the CEO of the Food Industry Association that represents grocery stores.

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"They are leaving their homes, leaving their families to make sure that people all over the country have access to the products they want and need. So I think it would be hard to overstate the gratitude that we all feel toward them," Sarasin told ABC11 by Skype last week from her Washington D.C. area office.

Brown says she and her fellow drivers are grateful for the accolades and will keep on truckin' throughout the pandemic.

"I'm going to be here until the end because that's what I do. I don't have to truck, I love to truck," she said.

Those of us on the receiving end are glad of that.
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