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Tom Peacock: wrenches, engines, and many miles

by Brian Robbins

FREEPORT, ME – For someone who spent the biggest part of his working career on the roads of Maine, Tom Peacock is looking pretty comfy at home these days.

Oh, don’t worry: he’ll jump behind the wheel in a heartbeat if there’s a good reason to … you can take the man off the road, but you can’t take the road out of the man.

Sitting with Tom at his home in Freeport one early evening recently, he’s relaxed and smiling – and obviously enjoying being retired.

Tom and his wife Ann live on land that has been in his family for “hundreds of years,” he says with a laugh; their home actually sits on what used to be the lower pasture of his great grandfather’s farm.

Depending on how old you are, you may know Tom as a diesel engine salesman – you may have even bought a Detroit Diesel or a Caterpillar off him.  Or perhaps you go back a few more years and remember a young Tom Peacock coming down the ladder with a toolbox to repair your 4-53 … or do a start-up on your new 6-71.

At 70, Tom has paid his dues and has plenty of memories to share.

Let’s hear a few.

In the genes

Tom Peacock came by his mechanical abilities and willingness to drive for the sake of the job naturally.

“My dad was a very good mechanic,” says Tom.  “He probably should’ve been a engineer.”

At one point, his father was making the long drive north to Limestone, ME to help construct Nike missile sites – but Tom’s first real taste of the road came from the period when his dad worked for American Motors.

“In 1955 they hired him as the service manager for the state of Maine,” says Tom.  “He went everywhere to take care of service issues and technical problems … Downeast, up north … everywhere.  In the summertime, I’d go…

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