Len Filomeo

Written by Len Filomeo:
Posted on September 21st, 2009 at 10:11 am
Go Back to Remembrances

There were bells on a hill
But I never heard them ringing
No, I never heard them at all
Till there was you

Written by Len Filomeo:
Posted on October 1st, 2009 at 12:53 am

I think Rick and Harold were referring to the red Chevy truck in this picture:

By the time I returned to San Luis Obispo in 1977 to live with Frank and Harold on Beebee Street, Frank had taken to driving a white light pick-up truck. I think it was a Toyota with a toolbox mounted behind the passenger compartment. Very handy but not big enough to haul the Hallikainen & Friends exhibit booth to the 1978 NAB.

So one day I come home to find that Frank had bought this red Chevy truck. Frank had dropped the manual transmission and needed me to drive up to a junk yard in Paso Robles to get another transmission. Chevy parts are usually interchangeable but it took two trips to Paso Robles to get one the would work on the red truck.

Even after Frank got the transmission installed, the truck still had a tendency to pop out of gear when it was pulling a heavy load. Which made an interesting climb over the Tehachapi grade from Bakersfield to Barstow on the way to the NAB Convention in Las Vegas.

It was already night time when we finally finished loading the truck and got underway to Vegas. I rode shotgun while Frank drove. After we made it over the Tehacapis I fell asleep and didn’t wake up until sunrise as we approached the outskirts of Las Vegas. I asked Frank how he stayed awake all night and never needed me to help with the driving. He said he used some old trucker’s tricks, like occasionally stopping and getting out to walk around to stay alert, which got us safely all the way to Las Vegas.

So add long distance trucking to Frank’s vast repertoire of hands-on skills, from doing home improvements with a Sawzall to taking a Ramset away from Steve Lamont (after Steve used it to set an anchor in the wall of the new KUNA-FM tranmitter building and sent a crack up the side of the building!) What was that, a Purple Load? Not much overkill there, huh?