A Tumultuous Year – End of the Year 2018

A Tumultuous Year  – End of the Year 2018

Dear Roadies,

As I greet you all one last time this year, I want to tell your many prayers for us are felt and encourage us. The Lord has been working.

There is terrific energy down at the shop. We are a long way into the work on the generator housing. It is the last substantial electrical project we have left to do. We have finished all the other main rewiring, thanks to a bus wiring manual I obtained from Nelson’s Bus Service. The tail lights work correctly now, and we have installed a backup camera and a backup horn. Now, when we are in reverse, it beeps to let people know. Most new trucks have that, but since Blue was made in the 1970s, that horn was not part of the safety requirements. For the camera, we have a little monitor on the dashboard connected so that we can see better. That’s all new and cool, and we can function on all safety accounts.


In the past, when it came to the power generator, we have only been able to access the generator from the back doors but to change air filters, make oil changes, and change spark plugs, you have to have access to the other side of the generator. Unless we climbed in and over the generator to get at the other side, it was not accessible -we’d have to hang upside down to get the work done until now.

One of the impressive things that our chief mechanic, Mickey, out at National Springs did is cut through the steel in the back of Blue so we could put in an inside access door to the generator. He did it all so fast; it only took a few hours. No more climbing around – all we have to do is open a sliding door now.

It was just something that we decided to try to do while the Van is still out there at the garage facility in West Milwaukee. We stripped the Van down to its skeletal state, and cut out the damaged parts. We also worked to rebuild everything effectively. It’s all super exciting, and the generator will be running better from now on as well as the engine, brakes, and steering.

Photo by John Jones

Photo by John Jones

Photo by John Jones


Going into the new year, all maintenance work on the Media Van will be more accessible and efficient.

Usually, when I told the guys what I needed to be done on the Van, and because I wouldn’t always have the equipment I needed to get it done, they would help me in between their other jobs. I expected things to get done within a week or two, but things didn’t usually pan out like that except for the access panel and the sliding door. The very next day, Mickey had gotten it done before I’d even arrived. I was so excited.

There is such a spirit of cooperation in the garage, and Mickey is pretty excited about it all now. He shows the Van off to customers who come in and likes to talk about the work he’s done on it and about what the Van does. He has even said he’d like to see it in action on the road when we finished all the work. “Invite me along; I wanna help out in some way.” He’s even mentioned bringing friends along too.

I brought my daughter down this past week while she was back in town for Christmas, and Mickey did more talking than I did, explaining and demonstrating how things worked, and opening up the back door to let her see.

God has knit us together as a team now. I love working there; it’s a total blessing. Things are going so well, and I know it’s because of the Lord working in all of us.

I was able to get the guys a Christmas present this year, some gift cards and things like that. They appreciated that very much.

“You didn’t have to do that, JJ.”


“Hey guys, you have been a really amazing part of my life. It’s the least I could do.”


We’ve grown pretty close, and it seems that this has been the ministry of the Media Van this 2018, the subtle way God works in the hearts of an unlikely team.

I am looking forward to finishing up the generator stuff these coming winter months and putting the skylight in as well. Replacing the hook hole we cut in the roof with a plexiglass dome skylight instead. Things are all moving at the right speed now.

Happy New Year, and thank you to all who have prayed for us and kept us on your mind this tumultuous year. You are all so amazing! We will keep in touch!

– John E. Jones and team