How a teenager came to own a 1959 B Model Mack Truck

Randy Taylor, a sales representative with Nortrux in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, was spending a day last fall at Lesco Distributors’ Pro Show ‘n Shine, when he stumbled across a 1959 B Model Mack truck he couldn’t resist checking out.

Rounding the front of the cab, he saw a teenager, cloth in hand, polishing up the truck’s chrome. To his great delight, he learned the boy, 12-year-old Travis Spargo, was the proud owner of the vehicle. Naturally, he had to learn more.

An early obsession

According to Travis, he developed an interest in trucks as soon as he was exposed to them, falling in love with the entire world of trucking around the age of four. Now 13, Travis hopes to build a career in the industry someday and envisions the B Model as just his first.

“The truck was bought at auction by Jon Bucher, who was a friend of my grandfather, Gordon, and my dad’s boss,” Travis says. “He had my dad restore it, and ever since, I’ve been in love with the truck,” Travis says.

Originally a water truck, Travis says the truck needed an almost full cosmetic restoration, with his father removing the tanker and replacing chrome that was pitted and damaged. True to the Mack reputation for toughness, though, the engine itself was running – Travis’ father basically just gave it a fresh coat of paint.

A lasting legacy

Bucher, then-owner of HIS Trucking with his wife Esther, knew Travis had become vested in the truck over the restoration period. Recognizing he had an opportunity to further Travis’ interest in the industry, Bucher named him a beneficiary in his will, with the intent to leave him the truck. However, he decided he didn’t want to wait until it was too late to see Travis enjoying the truck. The Buchers gifted him the truck outright in late 2022.

Travis Spargo with Jon and Esther Bucher.

According to Travis’ mother, Talayna, Bucher’s generous gift aligned perfectly with her son’s dreams, which reminded her of Tyler’s aspirations years earlier. “You don’t meet someone like him [Bucher] every day,” she says. “He felt he wanted to see Travis enjoying the truck while he was still alive. Not many people can say they realized their dream that they’ve had since they were three years old, but my husband was able to achieve his dreams by the time he was 20. I think Travis will follow in his footsteps.”

Travis already prefers being in a truck in his leisure time. Many teenagers Travis’ age would enjoy their school breaks spending time at home or enjoying recreational activities. Talayna says Travis’ idea of the perfect Christmas holiday was heading to work with dad at Tyler’s company, hauling compost for Elevate Ag Services, an organic waste management company that provides natural agricultural solutions in Alberta.

Future plans

Since being gifted the B Model, Travis and his father have enjoyed taking the B Model to shows and making new friends – like Randy Taylor – who are interested in the 13-year-old who cannot drive yet owns his own Mack truck. Travis says that although the truck is restored, he still has a few plans for customization in the future.

“We like to take the truck to shows so we might make some changes in the lights,” Travis says. “The truck doesn’t need anything though – it’s in really good shape.”

Taylor says he finds the trucking community to be uniquely warm, humble and close, and he loved seeing and meeting a young person who is passionate about Mack and starting on his Mack journey. “Kids like this are the new faces of the next generation of trucking,” he says. “Legacy starts young, and every legacy starts with a new generation of Mack owners.”

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