January 18, 2008
Blue-Collar Boomers Take Work Ethic to College
For 16 years, Russell Kearney awoke at 1:30 a.m. to hoist boxes of Wonder bread and Hostess cakes onto a truck and deliver them along a 120-mile route through eastern North Carolina.
After a decade, lifting and pushing thousands of pounds of bread — sometimes as much 10 tons a day — ruptured a disk in his back, making it feel "like my spine was cut in half," Mr. Kearney says. But he continued to work for five more years, until finally, "I just couldn't get out of