Adirondack Tractor Pullers Association
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In Memory of Pauline Cheney
From a Son (Walter Cheney) to a Mom
OK so many of you didn't know that my Mom was sick these fast few weeks. We admitted her to the Hospital for some answers. This was last Thursday of last week. The doc told us she needed tests and that was last Friday. The week was OK with mom...lots of stories and how are you doing...and jokes...as usual.I had talked to my mom about my upcoming truck pull on Saturday because i didn't want to not be there with her . She insisted i go kick some butt and bring her home a 1st place trophy....this was on Thursday.Friday she was transported to the Cancer Center for more tests and hopefully answers. Friday the the doc told us she was stage in the final stage of leukemia and has as a large mass in her lung .The Cancer had spread to her brain and she only had 48 hrs to live! We were all blindsided and destroyed. Mom being mom said OK and that she was fine with it. She just wanted to see the family and it would be ok. She is an amazing woman. With all this i didn't know what to do with the truck pulls the next day !! All my Sponsors and people counting on me and with the Points race; i cant miss a pull. This is where the decision was made. MY mom said go get me a trophy! I could see her failing...breathing getting worse and her starting to shut down. Hardest decision of my life. I talked to my family and by late Friday night mom had gotten so bad that she could barely answer us. I left the room telling her " I love you beautiful " and " ill do my best for you " Ironically Saturdays pull is the Annual Lufkin " Pull for a cure " Cancer awareness truck pull. We arrived at 8 am...1.5 hr drive with my girlfriend and 2 youngest boys. I get there and the rules are different..classes are not the usual and its hot!! almost 90 deg. I am stuck in a 6200 class ..UGH. But i say all i can do is try. The track is horrible and constant delays keep my class off the track ....10 am rolls by...then noon...no pull yet...its blistering hot....track is still trying to be fixed...i check out the trucks in my class and notice half of them are the MOD trucks. High HP engines in the old school chassis..like 79 fords with 460 big blocks...chevy trucks with the 454...etc. UGH again.....now 2 rolls around...we get ready to go out....nope! track is still so mushy the trucks cant even move the sled!!...more track prep needed. so we wait! I am constantly texting my brother about my mom all day! My brother ( the other Nissan truck puller of years past ) is keeping me updated. He says " mom is doing good this morning " Now i feel so much better ...since i am not there with her. next text about 2:30 from him says " you gotta do this for her Walt " ...i get pumped!!....3;30 ...He calls me. Mom had Passed..... I am a mess...Hardest moment of my life. Period. I am hurt...at a loss..feeling guilty for not being by her side! But my brother through his tears said to me just bring her home the win. My track family starts to find out and the support at the pulls is huge...i am blessed with such great friends. And so i wait for my turn to pull still so i can get home to my family. 4:00 passes then 5:00 passes now its 6PM and i am finally in line to pull. So many emotions and feelings of guilt...I am just numb. I talk to my truck like its my best friend " lets do this for mom"....I get up to the line and hook to the sled...track looks bad....i think do i shift?????stay in 1st????? Screw it I'm shifting.....I take off...great start and limit fast....i say bang 2nd....it goes but isn't good.....I'm in trouble!!! i immediately try and down shift which it never does....ever in 10 years of pulling....unless I'm almost stopped...the truck downshifts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I couldn't believe it! Not even supposed to happen. I dig and claw till i was stopped....it was all we had. I pull off the track and people are swarming me saying its close its close! The guy with the Chevy before me pulled great and was right there with me. I had 2 mod trucks left to go after me and I was focused on them! Could i beat two mod trucks>>?? The Chevy guy comes over and says wow great pull...i think i got you by a couple feet!...My heart sank and i was so lost with emotion....yet i still want to watch the Mods and maybe get a second for mom. The first Mod truck...big block ford....pulls down the track like a boss...I'm watching thinking I'm finished...he gets to within feet of where i stopped and blows his drive shaft all over the track! I almost puked!...Just then the Chevy guy yells across the track " Hey Nissan guy " you are in first!!! "you got me by 6 inches!!...I lost it....Only one truck left to go....Another Mod truck..beautiful older ford. The truck hooks up and i cant even watch...I'm just listening. He starts to go and floors the truck.....blows his drive shaft on the ground!!!!! I did it..............I can not tell you what i felt...i cried... a lot....i held my boys and my girlfriend and cried....So much emotion...I took the win....The first place trophy for my mom....Its surreal. I wanted to share this with everyone...its powerful in the fact that parents are not here forever. They do pass so take advantage of getting to know them better and spend quality time with them. Go give you mom and dad a hug today for me...may be the last time you do. Ill keep up the fight and from now on i will always be " Pulling for a cure "
Love you MOM
Our monthly meeting that was scheduled for July 11th at Ellenburg Center Fire Department has been canceled. We will see everyone at the Clinton County Fair in Plattsburgh for the first pull of the season on July 18th and 19th.