Kristi Farrington was happy with her work as a resipratory therapist and then life presented a huge challenge.
"My husband Steve came down with a brain tumor," said Kristi in an interview
with WOWT 6 News. "When I saw the cat scan I knew it was not a matter of if he would die, it was when he would die. Median survival is 18 months and he made it 16. Two surgeries, two rounds of chemo radiation."
Steve died in June of 2013 and Kristi's role as caregiver, full-time mother and full-time worker left her exhausted. She took time off work to recover and eventually decided to go back to UNO for her Masters Degree.
"I graduated in three years and got a job as a medical researcher," she said. "After two years on the job I realized all that time behind a computer was not for me."
That's when Kristi made the decision to pursue something else of great interest.
"I've always liked big trucks. I enrolled at JTL truck driver training last October, graduated in six weeks with my CDLA certificate. I got hired with Concrete Supply under the Rassmusen group in Gretna, Nebraska."
Now Kristi is most often on the job before sunrise until late afternoon.
"I'm just out, I'm driving a big truck and I've got a great group of guys to work with. I like that I'm actually contributing, I can drive around the city and I can say I was a part of that parking lot and I'm seeing the end product."
Kristi says she's often mentally exhausted at the end of the work day because of the responsibility that comes with driving a truck that weighs up to 36 tons when fully loaded. One frustration is other drivers who steer into the safe space she needs to leave between her vehicle and others.
Her message to other drivers: "Give us space, give us room , we're big, we're heavy, we get it. We want to go home too."
Kristi is delighted with her new career and encourages others to go for their dreams.
"I'm having a good time, it's a lot of fun!"