Our Story

Truck Defender History

An American Classic

​The Truck Defender story is an 'American classic'. The remarkable start-up and growth of the Truck Defender is well documented by Lynn Stanley in an interview with Dean Johnson, CEO of Prairie Industries, the inventor and manufacturer of the Truck Defender bumpers and truck accessories.

Stanley's article titled, "Defender around the bend" first appeared in May 2013 in the FF Journal, a metal fabricating & forming technology magazine. Now a 'digital legacy', the Truck Defender story can be accessed by the global community and serve as a reminder to Americans and entrepreneurs worldwide as to what made America great and how to "make America great again".

You'll not only be inspired by the Truck Defender story, but if your a truck owner looking to 'protect your investment at the lowest cost', you just might want to check out our "online' inventory here at Rocky Mountain Bumper and learn about the finest truck bumpers and accessories that are 100% American made.



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Custom Designed For All Makes & Models

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For over 5 years, Richard Johnson, owner of Rocky Mountain Truck Bumpers has worked with Truck Defender. The company's history, quality manufacturing and reputation are reasons for which Rocky Mountain recommends exclusively, the Truck Defender bumper.


Like most things, necessity is the mother of invention. While driving a truck and trailer through North Dakota late one night, Dean's wife Becky hit four deer. Dean needed to fix the grill, but was loathe to use steel because it was so heavy. He had a lot of experience welding aluminum, so he thought that might work. And that is how Dean came to weld his first aluminum bumper, Dean & Becky worked together to create their very own American Dream.

Prairie Industries began as a small, rural welding and repair shop in 2003. Ron Johnson did the mechanic work while Dean built customized steel flatbeds. Becky worked in Sturgis at Sturgis Vet and then came home to manage the shop office and help Dean with the horse- training business. Later on, they built their own shop on their ranch, which was 320 acres of no fences, bare buildings, and the three kids. That first bumper stayed on that pick-up until 2011, protecting that truck and the growing family in it from numerous deer collisions.

Those first years of any new company are tough, especially when you’re starting from nothing. Becky scoured web sites for unique businesses that would benefit from aluminum bumpers. She emailed photos, talked to local agriculture newspapers and magazines, carried brochures wherever she and Dean went, and mailed brochures across the United States. Her persistence paid off, and the orders started to come in. To date, some of the leading ambulance manufactures in the U.S. carry Truck Defender bumpers started with a mailed brochure over ten years ago.

Employees are the backbone of Prairie Industries and how they make Truck Defender. Manufacturing jobs aren’t common in rural America, but they work hard to make them a reality.


Rocky Mountain Truck Bumpers is an advocate of "lean manufacturing" for achieving a top-quality aluminum truck bumper for pickup, semi and sport models. Both Dean Johnson, the founder of Truck Defender aluminum bumpers for semi and pickups; and, the shop-foreman, Will (of 11 years) have both earned the bronze certification in Lean Manufacturing; and, all new employees are sent to Lean 101 classes to embrace that philosophy.

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