The trucking industry is preparing to say a sad goodbye to interstate driver Kenny Martland from Toowoomba, Queensland.
Martland passed away unexpectedly on January 27, leaving behind his wife Reanna and five children.
He had been a truckie for over 20 years, with the last 15 years spent driving Australia-wide, pulling B doubles and triples.
Over the last three years, he ran from Queensland to Darwin.
Martland’s uncle Bill told Big Rigs: “Kenny was a young family man, only 42, and was tragically taken from us on the Australia Day weekend.
“He had a beautiful family, with his youngest son only seven years old. “
He added: “His father John and I have been interstate drivers for over 40 years, and his cousins are also interstate drivers, so you could say trucking was in his blood.
“Kenny was my nephew, my brother’s son, but he was more than that. He was like a son to me also, and my best mate.”
Kenny’s funeral will take place at Burstow’s Funeral Care on Ruthven Street in Toowoomba on Friday Feb 9 at 9:30am.
His family have requested that attendees avoid wearing black, and instead don casual clothes, which Kenny would have preferred.
“If you own a pair of those ugly crocs, feel free to wear those, as Ken loved his!” Bill said.
The family have also asked for those attending to bring a trucker’s cap to place on top of the coffin before they take a seat.
“Our family will retrieve all the caps at a later time and they will be on display at Ken’s family home, where he had already started a display of his own collection,” Bill added.
There will no speeches allowed, and no official wake.
“Ken always said to just go to the pub and have a drink for him.
“So after the service, please feel free to go to a pub of your choice to remember Ken.”
The family has asked that their privacy be respected, and do not wish to have any visitors at Ken’s home before or after the service.
A GoFundMe page has been set up by a friend to support Ken’s family following his sudden death.
“On the 27th of January, Ken unexpectedly passed away, leaving behind his wife Reanna and five kids; Seth, Finn, Chrissy, Deegan and Tyler and their families,” it reads.
“As you can imagine, this turned their world upside down. It also left this beautiful family’s income taken in the blink of an eye.
“We are asking for donations to help them in this difficult time with funeral costs, daily bills and whatever is needed to help them get back on their feet.”
If you would like to donate, you can do so here.