Bus driver donates money so students can buy books
DAVIESS CO., Ky. (WFIE) - School officials in Daviess County say retirement didn’t last long for a former postmaster who is now a school bus driver.
Mike Pate had a 32-year career with the postal service and worked as postmaster of the city of Whitesville.
Not long into his retirement, Pate saw an article about preschool students not being able to attend school in person because of a shortage of bus drivers.
So, he joined the Daviess County Public Schools Transportation Department in March of this year. “I’m still making deliveries,” he said, “but what I’m delivering now is much more important.”
School officials say Pate’s willingness to help didn’t stop there.
While driving students to East View Elementary School one morning, he overheard several of them talking about the school’s Book Fair, saying they would not be able to purchase books because their parents didn’t have the money.
“I thought about it for awhile and decided, well, I think reading is very important,” Pate said. “It made me think about when I was a child. I come from a family of eight kids. My dad struggled to support us the whole time so I knew how these kids felt. So I talked to the school and donated some money so that anybody that hadn’t been able to go to the book fair could go get some books.”
Officials say Pate donated $1,000 – enough for more than 160 children to receive two books with a “buy one, get one free” special sale.
Guidance counselor LeVon Cozart called the donation “an amazing act of kindness.”
“He believes in education and wanted to give kids an opportunity to get a book,” Cozart said. “I let the kids know Mr. Mike bought their books because they are important and he cares for them, but he did not do this for publicity. In fact, the day he came in to talk to me about it, I had to ask his name. He didn’t even provide it as a means of acknowledgement.”
The students signs a giant thank you card for their bus driver.
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