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Lonely birthday boy’s wish comes true as 40 truckers rally for a spectacular parade

Eight-year-old Oliver Johnson, a self-professed truck enthusiast, celebrated his birthday in New Zealand with an unexpectedly heartwarming surprise

Lonely birthday boy’s wish comes true as 40 truckers rally for a spectacular parade
Representative Image Source: Pexels | Quintin Geller

Oliver Johnson celebrated his eighth birthday on July 10 in the comfort of his New Zealand residence. Being a naturally solitary child, his mother, Katherine, had a brilliant idea to bring him joy. He possesses an intense passion for trucks, acquainting himself with the names of various truck models, manufacturers and trucking companies. To uplift his spirits on his birthday, Katherine extended an offer of $50 to anyone who would provide Oliver a ride in their large commercial vehicle, commonly known as a big rig.


She had only wanted a single truck driver to accept her offer. However, much to her surprise, Barry Hart, the proprietor of Hart Haulage Trucking, went above and beyond by taking the idea to the next level. Hart took it upon himself to orchestrate an entire convoy of trucks for Oliver's birthday. What started as a simple gesture quickly gained momentum, and before they knew it, the situation almost spiraled out of control. A remarkable total of 40 truck drivers eagerly volunteered to participate in the Oliver Johnson convoy, surpassing all expectations.

Speaking to the NZ Herald, Hart said, "Every one of these truckies that are doing this, and there are probably ten trucks at least that are coming from Auckland, those guys, it will cost them $500-600 to get that truck down there, do their thing and go away, and not one of them is asking for anything."

While the specifics of the convoy were still in the process of being ironed out, particularly regarding traffic management, the overarching plan remained the same. On July 9, the intention was to gather at Oliver's residence and embark on a journey to a designated location. This location would serve as a rendezvous point where Oliver could have a close-up encounter with the fleet of trucks and have the opportunity to personally meet the kind-hearted truckers who had volunteered for this special occasion.


Hart reflected on the gesture, saying, "I just saw that there was a kid who didn't feel like he had friends and didn't feel like he had a community around him." After Oliver's story spread on Facebook, a compassionate woman from the South Island generously donated a birthday cake to make his day even more special. Additionally, members of the community have expressed their willingness to lend a hand and asked how they could contribute.

When asked about the response from his industry to the call for the convoy, Hart became emotional, stating, "Nothing surprises me more than what this industry does for each other." Katherine could not have asked for a better gift for her son and said, "I would like to say a massive thank you from the bottom of my – and my husband's – heart for giving up your time."

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