George Rumsey: Still driving the bus

George Rumsey has been driving a school bus route in York County since 1993. 

Presented by: SpiriTrust Lutheran
Written by: Anthony Machcinski
George Rumsey (Photo by Paul Chaplin for Our York Media)

George Rumsey still remembers his 1969 Dodge Polaris with a 383 engine under the hood, the car he cruised The Circuit with when he met his wife, Barbara.

In one way or another, cars have always been a part of George’s life. He worked as a salesman in Sears’ automotive department for more than 25 years. But what he’s best known for isn’t driving a two-door sports car around the city; it’s driving a long, yellow school bus around York Township.

He started driving for Reliance Motor Coach – now Reliance Student Transportation – back in 1970, picking up some extra hours in the summer. In 1993, when Sears reorganized the company, George left the business and began driving the bus full time.

George got a route that took him around Haines Acres and stayed with that route for the next 25 years.

I thought I was only going to do this for 10 years or so.

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George Rumsey

“I thought I was only going to do this for 10 years or so,” says George, now 78. “It was nice to do the traveling.”

For those 25 years, he mostly worked with elementary school children. This year, he changed his route, now working a high school track for York Catholic, but that doesn’t stop him from being recognized. Even years later, he still has former students approaching him – some now with children of their own.

“We went to a ballgame,” George says, “and this mother hauled her two kids over and said, ‘Hey! Do you remember me?’”

Driving the bus is a way for George to get out of the house, he says, but Barbara, who drove a bus herself for 13 years, still busts him about the job.

“When you die, they’ll probably bury you in the bus,” she says with a laugh.
George wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I learned a lot from those kids,” he says. “I just want the kids to have a decent driver.”

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