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Rymes Propane and Oils

November 1, 2007 By    

While traveling from Indiana to New Hampshire, a father and son took time out of their busy lives to talk – as family members and not business partners – about the big picture.

“We’ve been very fortunate to grow a company that my parents started with nothing in the ’70s, and now we have 150 employees,” says Jim Rymes Jr., 39, who owns Rymes Propane and Oils Inc. in Pembroke, N.H., with his brothers John and Tom and parents Jim Sr. and Carol.

“We’ve been very fortunate in our growth, and we thought we should do something to give back to the community,” Jim Jr. adds.

Jim Jr. and his father were driving new bobtails back from Indiana when the idea became clear. Jim Jr. is thankful for the important women in his life – his mother, wife and three daughters – and he was aware of the dangerous odds that women face in developing breast cancer.

“You don’t have to talk to too many people before you realize you know somebody who’s been affected by breast cancer,” he says.

Jim Jr. thought that if the company painted its trucks pink and white – pink being the recognizable color for breast cancer awareness, which was highlighted in October – it could spread an important message.

“I brought the idea to my family, and they were all really supportive,” says Jim Jr., the fleet manager.

Rymes unveiled its pink bobtail two years ago; it was the first propane truck to raise awareness for breast cancer, according to the American Breast Cancer Foundation (ABCF). The company also debuted a pink oil truck this past spring.

Rymes is one of 12 propane companies supporting the awareness campaign, ABCF reports, with each company donating 1 to 4 cents per gallon of propane it delivers.

Bulk Truck & Transport Service Inc. of Hanover, Ind., manufactures Rymes’ trucks, and as part of the ABCF program, it received $31,000 in donations, in addition to truck components, to have the pink bobtail built, Jim Jr. adds.

The bobtail raises funds for ABCF (, while the oil truck benefits Susan G. Komen for the Cure (

Rymes has taken the trucks to parades and trade shows, creating an uplifting experience, Jim Jr. says.

The company has taken the trucks to parades, trade shows and open houses, and the response has been impressive.

“It’s been an incredibly humbling experience because people will clap and cheer for the truck,” Jim Jr. says. “They’ll wave and give you thumbs-up. It’s just a pleasure.”

The company hopes its trucks will push people to talk about the disease and encourage women to get regular mammograms.

“If I can get somebody to make a connection with the trucks and breast cancer and get people talking about it who normally wouldn’t think about it, that’s what I really love,” Jim Jr. says.

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