Tow Truck Drivers Pay Tribute To Fellow Driver

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DIXON-

Dozens of tow trucks made a loop around Dixon today as part of the memorial services for Michael Bower.

The 29-year-old tow truck driver was killed by a hit and run driver on Feb. 23 on the approach to the Pioneer Memorial Bridge which connects West Sacramento and Sacramento.

Drivers of close to a hundred trucks say they are part of a brotherhood that face danger all too often trying to help driver's in trouble.

"I've had my truck hit, I've been this close to dying," driver Glen Mendes said while holding up his two fingers.

Drivers came from all over the region including the Bay Area and the foothills. One of them was Jennifer Schmeltz, who owns and operates an Elk Grove towing company with her husband. She brought her young son and daughter with her.

"I had no idea who he was. He had two babies same age as mine. It hit home quite a bit for me and my husband both. We want to come home to our kids," said Schmeltz.

As if to emphasize their point, driver Dillon Holmes says his truck was hit on his way to the procession even though he had his flasher on and a police car was close by.

"She went right around the cop and almost hit the cop, almost hit the truck in front of me and ended up hitting me," said Holmes as he pointed to the damage to his front fender.

At the memorial services, T-shirts were sold with words on them saying 'Slow Down, Move Over, Obey the Law, Our Lives Depend On It.'

The proceeds will go to Bower's widow and their two daughters, aged 3 and 10 months. CHP investigators in the Woodland office are still trying to find witnesses to the accident. They believe he was hit by a big rig after he stopped to make repairs to his tow truck.