33 years at the wheel

Published 19/07/2014 | 12:00

Paul Clarke (School Bus Inspector), Rory Kilcoyne and Joseph Healy (School Bus Inspector).

He has brought generations of children to schools in Ballymote.

Now, in his 33rd year as a school bus driver, Rory Kilcoyne has made his last stop.

Over the years, his passenger, small and not so small, were attending all three schools in Ballymote.

They are the primary school Scoil Mhuire gan Smal, and secondary schools Corran College and Colaiste Mhuire.

With the passage of time, Rory found he was carrying the children of children who had once been his passengers.

He said: "I am bringing the next generation to school.

"I saw parents and their children on the bus.

"I didn't think when I started I would be bringing their children to school."

For five years, Rory worked as a relief driver for CIE in Sligo and Leitrim.

He then brought children to the schools in Ballymote from the Killavil, Bunninadden, Templehouse and Ballinacarrow areas.

His route then changed.

For the last six years, he was collecting children from the Gurteen, Culfadda and Keash areas.

Rory also has the distinction of having an unblemished career as a bus driver.

"I was lucky.

"I never had a tip or a scrape," he said.

Now, all his former passengers wish him health and happiness in retirement.

Sligo Champion

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