After a search lasting nearly three weeks, the body of missing Colorado Springs truck driver, Marty Weller was found Wednesday evening. The 47-year-old driver had been missing since Labor Day weekend, and was found dead in the cab of his truck at a Petro near Knoxville, Tennessee. Authorities do not suspect foul play, as the ignition switch was in the ‘on’ position, the truck was out of fuel, and nothing was missing from the cab. The driver is believed to have died of natural causes.
Weller was finally found by truck driver, and former Arizona police officer, John Scadova – who had been actively searching for Marty and his truck for nearly two weeks. Scadova’s truck is owned by Gary Lang – a former firefighter, who had become aware of Marty Weller’s disappearance after it was announced by the Missing Truck Driver Alert Network. It was known that Weller’s last drop/pickup was in Fort Collins, Colorado and that he was headed toward Concord, North Carolina – which happened to be along Scadova’s route.
Scadova had been keeping an eye out for Weller’s purple ’96 Freightliner, and commented that he’d had a feeling of familiarity after seeing a photo of the truck. Scadova methodically searched his route, choosing different truck stops each time, scanning the parking lots, and keeping and eye out for the missing person both inside and outside.
Although he had been to the Petro near Knoxville a week earlier, he stopped for a rest and to check out the location again. Once in the parking lot, he caught a glimpse of what he thought was the missing truck – though his view was obstructed by a few other rigs parked in the lot. Scadova pulled forward to get a closer look, and immediately knew that what he was looking at was the truck from the Missing Truck Driver Alert Network‘s photo.
Scadova, realizing that emergency responders were beginning to arrive, called for an ambulance, and quickly notified Gary (who had made Scadova – and all of his other drivers aware of Weller’s missing status weeks prior).
Scadova expressed his condolences to Marty Weller’s family, as well as frustration that it took as long as it did to locate the missing driver. “There’s got to be a better way,” said Sacadova “We have to find a better system for locating missing drivers, children, women, men, everyone.” Scadova referred to himself as an old school truck driver, and said that he naturally looks out for other drivers, and people in general. He’s also in the habit of making himself aware of missing drivers, missing persons, and Amber Alerts. He (as well as the other drivers of Wolfsden Enterprises) compares last known locations with his routes, and consciously rotates his stops to do what he can to help.
“I’m only one man, if there were more drivers out there looking we could have saved him – or at least brought his family peace of mind much sooner.” Scadova said, urging other drivers to keep an eye out for those that are missing or in need of help.
Next time you see that there’s a missing driver, or an Amber Alert in your area – we encourage you to do the same (if you don’t already). Be aware of your surroundings, take an extra hard look around, and do what you can to help a fellow driver.