We had the good fortune of connecting with John Ilory and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi John, where are your from? We’d love to hear about how your background has played a role in who you are today?
I’m from Fort Pierce, FL. Born and raised to Haitian immigrant parents. As I mentioned, my parents both came from Haiti to start a new life. I’m the youngest of my moms 4 children. Growing up we were always a close family. My parents were stable for the most part until my parents separated when I was 5. Soon after that we bounced around a few places until we settled in the projects. Growing up in that neighborhood built a lot of character. A lot of the things in America my parents weren’t used to and accustomed to coming from Haiti but they managed to raise up right and respectful no matter the circumstances. Me and my siblings are first generation kids so a lot of things, we had to learn on the fly or from our friends that we were around. My upbringing impacted my life in a major way because my mom passed away when I was 12. It was just me and my siblings and my dad after that. Most of our family moved from Fort Pierce when my mom passed away so it was always just us. My older siblings were grown when my mom passed so honestly it was just me and my sister Marise. She literally took over the role as my mom and raised me with my dad. She sacrificed a lot and I owe her a lot.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Outside of the BBM brand, I’m also a truck driver. I went and got my CDL’s in 2019 after moving from Tallahassee. My best friend Jameson drive trucks as well and he’s always pushed me to get my CDL’s. Seeing how it changed his life and his family’s life. I wanted the same for myself and my family. That’s my boy and ever since elementary he never ever gave me bad advice. It wasn’t easy at first because usually when you get your CDL’s, u usually have to go over the road and drive all around the country. But I got mines right before my son was about to be born and I honestly didn’t want to miss that. He’s my first child and that moment is something I just didn’t want to miss. So I was out of work for a few months and the mother of my kids stood behind me and kept pushing me. I sold as much BBM apparel to make ends meet to get us thru that stage. I ended up getting a job driving for Amazon and it literally has changed my life. Has put me in a better situation for my family and I’m grateful for it. But I still want better so I’m going harder to get my own truck line. I mean we do preach making Bigger and Better Moves. That little tough patch just taught me how to stay grounded thru anything and if focus, you can do anything you want.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well I’m in the Tampa area so if it’s the fall season, I would go and catch a Bucs game, maybe hit up Clearwater and hang out on the beach. Honestly my sister is a chef and she has a catering so she’ll do all the cooking lol. She’s amazing with what she does in the kitchen so the food would be provided by BBM caterings & things.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Yes I would like to shout out my family and my hometown. My siblings really stand behind me and they push me to keep going no matter what. My girlfriend, my kids are my reasons why I go so hard. I want a better life for all of us and different upbringing for my children. My close cousins and friends Cardo, Jameson, my little cousin Tre, my artist Vern, and my parents who are resting In peace and watching over me daily. My city because they support to the end and been there since day 1. They say sometimes your city is the last place to support you but I honestly can say, my city been behind me the whole way. Shoutout to Tallahassee too because that’s where I lived when I was a high school senior up until 2019. I became a man in life in Tallahassee.