Pine Belt man with rare illness becomes trucker for a day

A Waynesboro man, born with a rare disorder, fulfills his dream and becomes trucker for a day.
A Waynesboro man, born with a rare disorder, fulfills his dream and becomes trucker for a day.(photo provide by: Chuck McRaney)
Published: Mar. 18, 2022 at 7:25 PM CDT
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - Jarvis Coe said he’s always wanted to be a truck driver, but a rare disorder has prevented him from becoming one.

The Waynesboro man was born with a condition known as Short Bowel Syndrome.

“Whenever I was born, they said that I wasn’t going to make it to a year, and I’m 33 now,” Coe said.

This year, he decided he no longer wanted to be hooked to machines and has stopped some of his treatments.

He now receives care from SouthernCare Hospice.

“We meet Jarvis at his home and in his room, he has posters of big rigs and trucks everywhere,” Chuck McRaney, a SouthernCare Hospice social worker said.

McRaney says when he found out about Coe’s love for big rigs and his dream of being a truck driver, he decided to make a phone call.

“I was told that his name was Javis, and he has a rare condition and he ain’t got long to live,” said Lincoln Williamson, a truck driver from Poplarville.

Williamson says when asked to give Coe a ride, he immediately agreed to do it. In February, he surprised Coe in his semi-trailer truck.

“It was like Christmas morning for him,” McRaney said. “Like a little kid on Christmas. He was just so happy. Smiling from ear to ear.”

Said Coe: “I was speechless, I was shocked, I didn’t know how to feel about it. I’ve never had anyone do that for me. Never.”

Coe got the round-trip of his life.

“I took him all the way from Ellisville down here to Hattiesburg and turned around and went all the way back,” Williamson said. “We stopped and ate, you know.

“I spent pretty much the whole day with him.”

Williamson shared a video of Coe’s experience with his almost 40,000 followers on TikTok. He says the response by other truck drivers has been amazing.

“There are probably 100 videos dedicated to Jarvis,” Williamson said. “They were dedicating their load, their run to him.”

Coe says he’s thankful for everyone who helped make this special day possible and says he will never forget Williamson and his kind gesture.

“I will be forever grateful to him, and I hope he knows it,” Coe said.

Williamson and Coe have since taken a few more rides together, and they both have become good friends.

“The way I was raised, you know, if you can help somebody you need to help them because one day you may need that help,” Williamson said. “One day I might be wanting to take the truck, something may happen to me, and I want to just go ride one more time.

“I was so proud and so honored to be able to do that for him. It was awesome.”

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