Family of the truck driver killed in a fiery semi crash near Millersville last week wants to thank the people who tried to rescue him.
61-year-old Billy Dixon died at the scene on Interstate 65 near mile marker 101 in Sumner County. Officials with the Tennessee Highway Patrol said he rear ended another tractor trailer on the side of the road as its drivers changed seats.
Flames engulfed Dixon's truck while he was trapped inside. Other truck drivers who rushed to Billy with fire extinguishers said they were able to communicate with him at first but the flames got too intense.
"I'm thankful and grateful for the truck drivers that tried to save him," Linda Dixon, his wife, said. "I'm grateful for the state troopers, the paramedics and police."
Family and friends describe Billy as a man with a tough exterior but a soft heart. He was an Air Force veteran and drove trucks for more than 25 years.
"He looked mean but he was big soft teddy bear," Heather Williams, his daughter, said. "He always gave and was always there through the good and bad."
In the midst of the destruction and devastation, Billy's wedding band was in tact enough to give back to Linda.
"That symbol means our love is still going on and is strong, my world has been ripped apart by this accident" Linda tearfully told NewsChannel 5.
Even though the crash involved two tractor trailers, Linda still urge drivers to be careful when out on the roads.
"Be aware, be more courteous because truck drivers risk their lives everyday," Linda added.
The family invites truck drivers to join them for a memorial service on Saturday, November 5th at 100 Academy Road in Madison at 2 p.m.
Billy's boss has set up a GoFundMe account to help the family with expenses. Click on this link to help.