This month’s creation was built for Wade Holtman (38) of East Grand Forks, MN. Married to Kayla for five years, she is a professional hair dresser and he’s a trucker – two peas in a pod. They have two boys – Billy (10) and Maveryk (6) – and both love trucks and think the new rig is cool. Yes, Wade has a cool truck, but Kayla has a sweet ride, too – a loaded-up Jeep! She likes cool stuff, too, so when her husband wants something new for his truck, she’s into it.
Growing up around trucks, Wade’s dad Rodney has been trucking for Wade’s entire life. And even though Wade’s mom Arlene stayed home to raise her boys back then, she now trucks with dad, too. Starting out in a 1976 Pete COE with a double bunk years ago, except for bumping his head a couple times and buying Volvos, Rodney has always been, and is still currently, a Peterbilt guy. These days, Wade’s parents run a Pete 579 with a big ARI bunk on the back.
Going out with his dad whenever he could from the time he was two years old, Wade was fortunate to experience a little home-bound seat time at the young age of 14. One of his dad’s trucking buddies, Jimmy Gregoire (who Wade nicknamed “Uncle Jimmy”), was a huge influence on Wade while growing up, as well. Knowing at an early age that Wade had the bug bad, his parents didn’t discourage trucking.
After graduating high school in 1998, Wade worked construction until age 21, when he got a driving job for EW Wiley. He drove there for a year and then switched to Pro Transport for six months. Then, with a little help from his parents, Wade bought his first truck – a 1998 Pete 379. He owned it for a few years and then upgraded to a used 2001 Pete flattop that he drove for six years. In 2011, he bought a used black 2007 Peterbilt 379 with a 48” flattop that he was lucky enough to get on a Cat Scale card. He drove that truck for three years and then ordered a new Kenworth T660. He drove the KW until he ordered the new 389 pictured here.
Not wanting to deviate much from the basic specs of his ‘07 Pete, Wade just wanted a new truck with a few of his own touches. That’s when he called me. The new truck is a 2018 Peterbilt 389 with a 58” flattop, a 295” wheelbase on low low air-ride, a car-hauler front axle, a 565-hp X15 Cummins with 2,050 torque, an 18-speed, locking diffs and almost every “warm package” item you can get. Wade said the best time to order a truck is when its 17 below, because you won’t miss the stuff you really need.
After the truck arrived, Tyler in our Service Dept. installed an Air Ride by Horse front air-ride kit and a row of rocket launcher switches into his header. Then, the guys in the Body Shop added 12 Ga. cab and sleeper skirts and a bumper lift kit. Wade got his light bar from 12 Ga., too. He had it made to match the rear of his trailer, with just two lights on each side, and then wired it himself in his garage. We added load lights to the back of the sleeper, painted the fuel and air tanks (kept the ends polished), installed seven cab lights, a custom bumper, 8” dummy stacks, low-ride Hogebuilt fenders on hidden brackets, breather lights and an old-school bowtie visor.
Wade has owned his own trucking business for 16 years and has had five trucks. He pulls a 54’ spread-axle reefer and runs the East steady. He loves trucking and knows nothing else and believes when you like what you are doing and driving, life is so much better. Needless to say, Wade is a happy man. His new ride is long and low, and definitely good to go!