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The Interview Behind ‘I Drive Your Truck’

Paul Monti next to the truck of his son, Jared Monti. Jared Monti died while serving in Afghanistan in 2006. (Anna Miller/Here & Now)

Paul Monti next to the truck of his son, Jared Monti. Jared Monti died while serving in Afghanistan in 2006. (Anna Miller/Here & Now)

A conversation Here & Now’s Alex Ashlock had with Paul Monti of Raynham, Mass. sparked a song that hit No. 1 on the country charts last month.

Monti’s son Jared was killed in Afghanistan in 2006 and a couple of years ago he told Ashlock that he still drives Jared’s truck, as a way to remember and feel connected to him.

A songwriter heard that conversation and wrote the song “I Drive Your Truck.”

The story was featured on NPR’s All Things Considered this week.


  • Paul Monti, father of Jared Monti, who was killed in Afghanistan.
  • Alex Ashlock, producer and reporter for Here & Now who also directs the show.

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  • burroak

    Robin,  like the elevator social experiment; quirky and interesting; and thanks for the ending, I did not know the country song’s “I Drive Your Truck”s history. And knowing that, makes it more tearful. 

    • Alex Ashlock, Here and Now

      Thanks for listening. It is amazing what has happened with the Jared Monti story since he died. And his father Paul is the reason why. He’s a retired teacher and he has taught me a lot.   

  • nrm8821

    Mr. Monti was my 9th grade teacher and this story is pretty close to home having known him. It’s great to see that someone wrote a song about his story with his son.  Great song

  • Joan

    I  had Mr. Monti as an Earth Science teacher in 1974.  Best teacher I ever had.  What a great tribute Mr. Monti and his son.

  • Swatsoldier911

    God Bless you and your son!  Thank you for all your efforts and your sons heroics will never be forgotten!  Matthew 5:9

  • Denise Peterson

    I worked with Paul at SHS and he was one of the finest men I’ve known. He is making sure the sacrifice that his son made for this great country will not be forgotten. I was thrilled that the song was written with Mr. Monti as it’s inspiration. He has an Angel in heaven who is very proud of him.

  • Surfdancer

    What a beautiful story-great job Robin Young-love the way they faded the song in and out of the interview.
    Thank you Mr. Paul Monti for all the lives you’ve touched with your teaching and even through your great loss, you continue to make positive changes to bring awareness, honor and dignity to the memories of Jared and all our beloved veterans.
    You are such a wonderful role model to so many.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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