Andrea had a load to run and needed to be at the truck around 11 p.m. or so. Every now and then I ride with her so we can have some talk time, no tv’s, no computers, just the two of us in the truck. It's the perfect opportunity to talk about us, make plans on whatever needs a plan, talk about our dreams and goals and just to talk about different things in general. We drive to her tractor but when she got in to check the status of her load she saw the pick-up time had changed to a different day so we exited the truck and go back home.
Part of the trip home involves rolling down a road called South Fulton Parkway. South Fulton Parkway is a dismal stretch of road with miles of space between exits. It is desolate and dreary with absolutely ZERO lighting at night. It is literally pitch black beyond what your headlights can show yet we see a young lady in a tight pink dress walking. We are rolling at least 60-65 mph when we see her so we slow down, pull over and wait for her to catch up to us.
Andrea says, “Sweetie are you ok?” The girl is crying says she was kicked out of her boyfriend’s car. He took her money and left her stranded on the side of the road. She says, “I tried to wave trucks down, no one stopped.” I ask her does she have a phone, “Do we need to call the police for you?” She responds, “No, I tried to call my husband but he’s at work. Can you take me to Old National?” Immediately red flags go up in my head and I realize we don’t know who or what we have picked up. Andrea also sensed something is off and continues to engage her in conversation while keeping her eyes directly on her. “Do you live here?” The girl says she is from Atlanta, been here all of her life, but she doesn’t know where Old National is.
Andrea keeps talking to her, trying to gather more information, get her to open up. The girl is evasive. She just wants to be taken to Old National. She is staying at the hotel behind the Waffle House. Now it’s clear to me we have a robbed and possible raped hooker in the car. The boyfriend was a "client" and her husband is her “handler”.
We take her to Old National and right before we drop her off I look her dead in the face so I can remember what she looks like. She is young, between 16-21 tops, milk chocolate complexion, facial structure is long, not round and she is wearing weave braids. She has a pound of make up on, tight pink dress. She did have a cell phone. She spoke with perfect diction and said yes ma’am, no sir during the conversation with us. As we near the Waffle House I tell her, “Listen you be careful out here. I’m from Old Nat'l. These streets ain’t no joke.” She thanked us and got out of the car.
Andrea and I talked about this on the way home. This girl was left on the side of South Fulton and based on what she said about waving down trucks she had been walking for a long time because when we came on South Fulton there were no trucks coming toward us AND there were none when we left the truck to get back on South Fulton. We can only pray that this young woman is ok.