Alabama Trucking Legend Buddy Moore Dies at 88
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Former Alabama Trucking Association chairman and state industry leader E.H. “Buddy” Moore Jr. died July 25 after more than a half century in the trucking industry. He was 88.
“He led a remarkable life, and he loved this industry,” said daughter Susan Kirkpatrick, executive vice president and CFO of family-owned, Birmingham-based Buddy Moore Trucking. “My brother [Buck] and I worked side-by-side with him for 22 years. He was a self-made man and a whiz with budgeting. To the day he died, he budgeted with a yellow legal pad and a No. 2 pencil.”
His father, E.H. Moore Sr., drove trucks while running a feed and grain store, said Cary “Buck” Moore, who described his dad as a hard-working man who was respected and liked. Unlike in some other states where trucking companies compete against each other, he said the Alabama community is close-knit and amiable.
Susan Kilpatrick, Buddy Moore and Buck Moore. (Buddy Moore Trucking)
Buck, president and chief operating officer at Buddy Moore Trucking, said his father taught him about the industry.
For more than 40 years, Moore served Alabama Trucking Association in nearly every leadership position and was bestowed with the H. Chester Webb Award as the state’s highest honor in the industry for his numerous contributions to Alabama trucking.
From the town of McCalla, he graduated from high school and attended Auburn University for two years, leaving because Kirkpatrick declared “he was lovesick to come home to marry” his sweetheart, Paddy.
Buddy Moore’s first truck in 1963 after he started what would be a lifelong career in Alabama’s trucking industry. (Courtesy of the Moore family)
Starting his career as a driver, Moore spent the first 10 years as an owner-operator and always maintained a recognition of the important role truck drivers have.
“My siblings and I knew what it was like for our daddy to be gone all week. Daddy was gone on the road the first 10 years of my life,” Kirkpatrick said.
Moore fulfilled a dream when he founded his namesake company over two decades ago that typifies an old-fashioned approach to business built on the importance of relationships with its customers and employees.
“As I deal with the drivers out on the yard, I always tell them what I do is somewhat important, but it begins and ends with them, and we learned that from our dad. The driver is everything to our industry,” Kirkpatrick noted.
In lieu of flowers, the Moore family asks that memorial gifts be given to Pleasant Hill United Methodist Church, Buddy Moore Trucking Supply Chain Management Scholarship at Auburn University, or the Alabama Trucking Association Foundation.
Moore is survived by sons Buck and Alan, and daughters Kirkpatrick and Melissa Ethridge. He was preceded in death by Paddy, who passed away 11 years ago.
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