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LETTER: Bus driver shows his dedication

To the Editor:

We've all heard (and possibly personally remember) stories of the school bus -- long waits in the cold, cruel bullies, foul language, squished sweaty seats.

My family's past experience with the New Richmond school bus system couldn't be further from this stereotype. On Tuesday, Oct. 16, as my family was sitting down to dinner, the doorbell rang. I got up to find a gentleman holding a small booklet in his hand. I thought, "Great, a political pitch during dinner."

Instead, I found Jim Meath, my daughter's bus driver, standing on our doorstep returning our daughter's school planner. He just quietly remarked, "I found this on the bus and I was on my way home anyway..."

With that small gesture, I felt a surge of admiration and awe at the simple kindness of mankind. Hearing her bus driver's voice, my daughter came to the door saying, "I thought I felt something drop out of my backpack! I can't believe he just did that!"

Throughout the last two years, both of my youngest children have remarked at how much they like their bus drivers. Last year, my son's bus driver held a Valentine's Day drawing competition. That activity engaged my son in art, language and interpersonal skills well beyond the classroom setting.

At the end of the school year, the kids were given DQ treat coupons at the expense of their drivers. I am not advocating that public servants need to bribe and go out of their way to win over the public.

Instead, I write this as a heartfelt thank you for people like Jim Meath and others who move beyond the required duties of their job -- a thank you to people who bring civility, respect and kindness to our community.

Pam Norton

New Richmond