Armand Flamand used to drive this semi-truck. (Flamand family)

Armand Flamand used to drive this semi-truck. (Flamand family)

West Kelowna retired trucker caps off career with one last ride

West Kelowna’s Premium Truck and Trailer Inc. took Armand Flamand for one last spin

A retired truck driver got one last spin in a big rig on Wednesday (Dec. 16) afternoon, thanks to his daughters and a West Kelowna company.

Leslie Flamand said it all started with a post on Facebook. She and her sister Lori were looking for someone who could take their father for one last ride in a semi-truck as it was a dying wish of his after he was diagnosed with dementia.

Premium Trucks and Trailer sales coordinator Debbie Mortimer saw the post in a community group and reached out to Leslie right away to see if they could arrange something.

Three days later, retired trucker Armand Flamand was able to ride in a semi for one last time. The company’s service manager Troy Thompson said they were excited to help Armand and take him for a tour.

“It’s good to be giving something back to the people, who are actually keeping the country going,” Thompson said. “Without these guys running up and down the roads and helping us out, we wouldn’t have toilet paper ever.”

Leslie said she didn’t expect such a heartwarming response to their request.

“This is just amazing, and it’s overwhelming. It’s a real true Christmas miracle,” she said.

Armand started driving trucks when he was 16-years-old in Manitoba. At that time, he wanted to step up and support his family. He had other jobs besides driving semis, but he officially retired five years ago to take care of his daughter Leslie when she became seriously ill.

Now that she’s recovered, she wants to pay her dad back for all she’s done for him. After Armand was diagnosed with dementia, it became even more important to her to fulfil his last wish, so they could send him off with a good memory.

“I’ve had a life full of health crises, unfortunately… so to have somebody like him to lean on, it’s just amazing. And now he’s leaning on me and that’s what families do, right?” Leslie said.

Leslie said from now on, she’ll be watching out for others who may a similar wish to her father’s and do all she can to help them out.

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Twila Amato
Video journalist, Black Press Okanagan
Email me at twila.amato@blackpress.ca
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