Truck driver Steven Hobson said he and his driving-team partner Francis Sykes, both from Huddersfield, England, had talked about visiting the Las Vegas show for several years. When he proposed to Francis on New Year's Eve, he said it was only natural that they should get married during this year's ITS.
The couple has been driving together for three years, trucking throughout southern Europe in a Renault Magnum for AWL International, based in Widnes, England. The premium Renault tractor is a big cabover, powered by a 430 Mack E7 engine, but it was Kenworth that responded to their calls for help to stage the trucker wedding.
Most of the truck manufacturers had been contacted in advance. Kenworth responded and the event was set for one evening after the show had closed. According to Francis, that was the easy part. Getting the clothes, the music and the minister took them the best part of a week since arriving in Las Vegas.
To complete the occasion, Steven was dressed as Wyatt Earp and Francis in a complementary period, low-cut dancehall gown. Completing the entourage was Julie Thomas as maid of honor and fellow member of the 100-strong UK Lady Truckers' Club, and Lemini Whiteley, the bride's daughter.
To give the occasion added color -- as if it needed it -- the bride was given away by Elvis look-alike Eddie Powers, who provided the music and serenaded the happy couple as they exchanged their vows.
Conducting the ceremony in a cutaway Kenworth T2000 sleeper cab, the Reverend Julie Nourish stood between the seats -- demonstrating the great stand-up headroom in the T2000 cab -- while Steven and Francis sat on the bunk. Asked if she considered this an amusing wedding, Rev. Nourish said that it was a joyous yet serious occasion when two people enter in to the holy union of marriage. Besides, she said, it was nothing compared to a recent Klingon wedding she had performed at the Star Trek Experience at the adjoining Hilton Hotel.
Captions: Steven Hobson and Francis Sykes marry at the Las Vegas International Trucking Show. Elvis look-alike Eddie Powers gave away the bride and serenaded the happy couple. The wedding party, from left to right, included lady truck driver Julie Thomas, Elvis, the happy bride Francis Sykes and husband Steven Hobson. Completing the entourage is Francis' daughter Lemini Whiteley.