The International Towing & Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum added 22 new names to the Wall of the Fallen during its tenth annual ceremony honoring towing operators who have died in the line of service.
The names include those from previous years as the details of fatalities become known. In all, the Wall of the Fallen now has over 400 names of men and women who have lost their lives serving the towing and road service industry. (See below for complete list of towing operator names added in 2016.)
One towing operator dies every six days while on the job, according to Jeffrey Godwin, chair of the museum’s Wall of the Fallen as well as its Survivor Fund.
The Wall of the Fallen ceremony seeks to honor towing operators whose lives were cut short and the Survivor Fund provides a one-time gift to the families. Survivors’ families also receive a Certificate of Honor.
The annual ceremony also aims to boost motorists’ awareness of Move Over laws in effect in all 50 states that require drivers either to move over one lane and/or slow down when approaching an emergency vehicle. Some – but not all – states designate tow trucks as emergency vehicles.
The motoring public’s failure to slow down or move over – in addition to drunken or negligent driving – each year unnecessarily claims many towers’ lives.
Former Museum President Troy Barnett acknowledged the difficulty of losing a driver at the beginning of this year’s ceremony. “Two years ago I lost my senior driver while recovering an accident,” said Barnett also of Barnett’s Towing in Phoenix, AZ. “I am reminded once again the difficult time you are going through.”
Learn more about the Wall of the Fallen and the International Towing & Recovery Museum by visiting towingmuseum.com or contact Jeffrey Godwin, chair of the Wall of the Fallen and the Survivor Fund, at firstname.lastname@example.org.