Bus drivers launch warm-hearted competition

By Sylvia Hall – bio | email

PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Three-thirty in the afternoon means 1 thing for the sixth graders at Trent Lott Middle School in Pascagoula.  Its time to go home.

Tammy Tillman, Pauline Rogers Triplett and nine other bus drivers wait outside the school, ready to take students to different places throughout the Pascagoula School District.

"On some of our bus routes you see homeless people living in the woods," Triplett said.  "You actually see that and I actually see that on some of the routes."

Perhaps its sights like those that make them so thankful for the gifts they sometimes receive along the way.

"Its something that I had thought of and I brought it to the other bus drivers here," Tillman said.  "On very cold mornings I have one gentleman who brings me coffee in the mornings and I really look forward to it."

Tillman and the other bus drivers in the Pascagoula School District want others to share that feeling of warmth.  So they're putting each other to the test with a coffee drive to benefit a Pascagoula soup kitchen, Our Daily Bread.  Bus drivers from the two bus compounds within the school district are competing to see who can collect the most items.

"It's a competition between Pascagoula and Gautier," Tillman said.  "We are going to collect coffee, hot chocolate, sugar, any type of sugar substitutes and Styrofoam cups.  And other things are welcome but those are the main things we're collecting for Our Daily Bread."

The drive starts Monday, January 11th and goes until Thursday the 14th.  On Friday the 15th, they'll deliver the goods and announce the winner.  The winner gets bragging rights until the next competition between the Pascagoula and Gautier bus drivers rolls around.

"If this goes well, we've already decided that Christmas time and stuff like that, we're going to adopt families and just keep doing the food drives and keep helping our community," said Triplett.

You can drop off your donations at either of the bus barns in the Pascagoula School District.

Pascagoula's is in on the corner of Dupont and Bilbo Street, just East of Pascagoula Street.  Gautier's is on the campus of Singing River Elementary School off of Gautier/Vancleave Road.

They encourage you to show your city pride and help them in their mission to help others.

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