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RWIT ladies share more than just their career in trucking

Jul
23,
2019
0

The title says it all, RWIT ladies share more than just a career in trucking. One is a kidney transplant donor, the other is the kidney transplant receiver.

Two ladies of the REAL Women In Trucking (RWIT) organization lives will be changed forever, as one lady trucker, Elizabeth Sweet, is donating one of her kidneys to her “sister trucker”, Cheryl Lynn Iban-Bean.
Here’s the best part, Cheryl and Elizabeth were strangers when Ms. Sweet read that Cheryl was in dire need of a kidney transplant.

 

RWIT members share more than their career in trucking

Elizabeth Sweet (left) with Cheryl Lynn Ibana-Bean | Photo by Les Willis, Godspeed Expediters

PLEASE HELP THESE GALS… THEY NEED OUR Assistance
Elizabeth is doing the hard part- donating a kidney.  We can do the easy part- Make a small Donation to help them during their recovery and lost wages.

How we met Cheryl

Two years ago at the 1st Annual Queen of the Road Cruise, Allen and I had the pleasure of meeting one of the most kind and personable people we had ever met. She was Hawaii trucker Cheryl Bean, a nominee for the 2017 Queen of the Road Award, and winner of the 2018 Queen of the Road Award.  You never would have known that Cheryl was suffering from Lupus,  a life threatening autoimmune disease which attacks  body tissues. In Cheryl’s case it was attacking her kidneys.

Cheryl Ibana-Bean - 2018 recipient of RWIT’s “Queen of the Road” award

Cheryl Ibana-Bean – 2018 recipient of RWIT’s “Queen of the Road” award sponsored by RoadPro Brands

Here is an interview Allen had with Cheryl while we were on the Cruise where she discusses her life in Hawaii as a trucker as well a her struggle with Lupus.  At this time of the interview, Cheryl was on a kidney donor list in Hawaii and had been making several trips the hospital during flare ups and undergoing dialysis.

 

During all this time, Cheryl remained active in her Ladies of Hawaii Truckin’ Pages on Facebook. The Ladies of Hawaii is a non- profit organization to promote lady truckers and ladies in the trucking industry. The organization is very active in their selected charities: Lupus, Cancer and the Legacy of Life and often give back to their community through the “Benefiting Honolulu Habitat for Humanity.”

After Cheryl moved to Oklahoma, she was able to get on an Oklahoma donor list, increasing her chances for finding a donor.

It wasn’t until fellow trucker, Elizabeth Sweet, noticed the thread on  the Real Women in Trucking Facebook page that the story caught her eye about Hawaiian truck driver Cheryl Lynn Ibana-Bean, who was suffering from Lupus and needed a kidney to remain alive.

 “Seemed  simple to me,” Sweet would later tell writer, trucker, and folk singer Paul Marhoefer. “My blood type makes me a universal donor.”

Well Elizabeth, it may have seemed simple to you, but your decision to help a fellow human being is pretty awesome to us.  You are a hero to many and we are all so grateful to you for coming to the need of our dear friend Cheryl Bean.

We also want to thank another good friend, Les Willis Godspeed Expediters, LLC.  If anyone knows Les, you know he is one of those people who when he hears a call to help someone in need, he is one of the first ones there to step forward.  You’ve probably seen him at GATS where he oversees the schedule and coordination of all activities in the now famous GATS parking lot.

Elizabeth Sweet-Les Willis

Elizabeth Sweet and Les Willis of Godspeed Expediters

Les stepped up once again and sponsored the June trip of Ms. Sweet where she was flown out to the Nazih Zuhdi Organ Transplant Institute in Oklahoma City to undergo three days worth of bloodwork, ultrasounds and multiple evaluations by a team of physicians. As God would have it, Elizabeth is a perfect match. The 2 ladies are scheduled to have their surgery September 9, Lord willing.

If you would like to meet up with everyone; Cheryl, Elizabeth, Les, and the ladies at REALWomenInTrucking.org,  they’ll be at GATS August 22-24.  They’ll either be in the Truck Parking area for the St Christopher Fundraiser, the RWIT booth 1015, or just enjoying the show.

Here’s the Donation Page Again-  Let’s show them some Love

National Foundation for Transplants- Your Donation Can Make a Difference! Cheryl and Elizabeth

Donna Smith

 

 

 

© 2019, Donna Smith. All rights reserved.

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By: Donna Smith

Donna Smith is an active part of the advocacy for professional drivers. Although she has not driven a truck nor does she have a CDL license, her strong convictions destroys all notion of “you have to drive a truck to understand”…. and she IS the wife of a career truck driver. Donna believes justice can be achieved through passion, honesty and transparency, and that same belief and passion allows one to be an advocate for whatever the cause is they believe so strongly in. Donna holds a degree in Medical Technology and has been a part of industry research for many years. Her love for research led to a patent she received while working at General Foods Corporation, one of many research projects she was involved in. In 2001 Donna became involved with husband Allen’s advocacy for professional drivers and she combined her love for research with her belief in justice to aid with many of the movements that Allen and she became so passionate, active, and known for. Donna enjoys networking with others and believes that in order to achieve positive change, one must first be able to recognize and be accountable for their own actions and not be quick to point fingers at others, nor depend on others to carry the load. “Stand up for what you believe in, never give up”

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