The Dark Side

This month’s creation was built for Philip Miarer of Fostoria, Ohio. Coming from a dedicated Kenworth family, Philip, who was ordering his first truck on his own, went to “the dark side” and bought a Peterbilt – the dark green one you see here. Most people thought he must of fell off a truck and bumped his head, but he is very happy with his decision, so far.

The youngest of three kids to his parents, Rennie and Mary Miarer, Philip was the only one to catch the trucking bug. His dad has been trucking since before Philip was born, and his mom taught school when she wasn’t being a stay-at-home mom. Rennie had up to 15 trucks at one time, but now he is just down to a few sweet collector rigs, like a Transtar II and a 1982 W900A Kenworth extended hood, along with a newer KW he still drives today.

While growing up, whenever possible, Philip would go out on the road with his dad, but it never seemed to be enough. So, after graduating from high school in 1998, Philip headed to a tech school to study diesel and ag. Two years later, after finishing tech school, he started working on trucks, but after about a year, he decided that he would rather drive them than work on them.

Since his dad had trucks, Philip was able to drive his dad’s previous rigs when he upgraded to a new one. Over the years, he drove a 1994 W900L KW (black with a green stripe), then a yellow W900L, then a red 2000 W900L, then a yellow and blue 2004 W900L and then a 2006 W900L, painted dark charcoal and aqua green. In 2007, his dad let Philip be involved in the ordering of a new W900L, which they had painted black and orange in a Seminole scheme. This was the first new truck that he was involved in the ordering process, as all of the rest were just really nice hand-me-downs.

Driving that black and orange KW for three years, Philip opted for a used 2006 Pete (dark blue and orange) next, and, of course, his dad hated it (he wouldn’t drive it – not even around the yard if it just needed to be moved). The next truck was a used 2013 Pete, and, once again, his dad refused to drive it. But Philip really liked it. Being a nice, low-mileage 389, they fixed it up a bit and even took it to the Louisville truck show, where Philip met lots of nice people that became great friends.

By this time, dad was slowing down, and he began selling off his equipment. Philip decided that he wanted to get his own new truck, and since Kenworth had stopped making the modular cab flattop, he decided he wanted to get a new Peterbilt. This is when he called me, and we hit it off right from the start. Since this was the first truck Philip ever purchased on his own, he got exactly what he wanted!

The new truck seen here is a 2018 Peterbilt 389 ordered with a 280” wheelbase, a 48” flattop sleeper, a Cummins X15 with an 18-speed, and all the lightweight goodies, including wide base drive tires. For the color, Philip chose a Kenworth Dark Green color that, in some lighting conditions, looks black – which fit nicely with his “going to the dark side” theme.

When the truck showed up, the guys in the shop installed a painted drop visor, dummy straight pipes, WTI rear fenders, painted cab and sleeper skirts, window chops, a couple extra cab lights, a custom shock box cover, and nine load lights across the back of the sleeper. The guys in the shop also painted the fuel tanks, and then my dad chopped the air cleaners and lowered the seat bases.

Philip Met his wife, Courtney, on New Year’s Eve in 2000, and told her, “I drive a truck. I hope that’s not a problem.” Married for almost 11 years now, I guess it wasn’t! Philip feels very blessed to have such a wonderful wife and best friend (she is a Pharmacist). The couple has two boys – Aaron (6) and Ben (3).

Trucking isn’t easy, especially when you work with family, but Philip Miarer appreciates all they have done for him over the years. He was raised to work hard and don’t quit, and that’s exactly what he is doing. Running mostly local around Michigan, Ohio and Indiana, Philip has plans to do a bit more to this truck. As soon as he has enough funds saved, he wants to replace the Peterbilt’s interior with a KW interior. So, he may have “gone to the dark side” but maybe he hasn’t completely forgot his roots!

About Clint Moore

Clint Moore has been a truck nut all his life - especially old school cool trucks with 70's and 80's paint schemes.  For the last 14 years, Clint has been a salesman at Kansas City Peterbilt who specializes in specing, ordering and customizing new and used trucks for his awesome customers – he loves to make new trucks look older!  Clint has been writing for 10-4 Magazine since 2006 and, as he puts it, “I love my job!” Clint and his wife Cris (Mother Trucker) have two small children, a son named Trucker (that’s right) and a daughter known as Georgia Overdrive.