SARASOTA COUNTY, FLA After 40 years of driving a school bus in Sarasota County, Debby Brooks is climbing down from her seat for the final time.
Friday night, a cross section of principals, supervisors, colleagues and former students surprised Brooks with a retirement.
Brooks says she took her assignment very seriously, knowing she had a direct impact on the students growth and development.
"Every day I pick them up, I say 'hello' and 'goodbye,' and it doesn't even matter if they respond because I know it does make a difference in their day," Brooks said.
And after all these years, she says kids really haven't changed that much.
"Their basic need to know that somebody cares about them hasn't changed," she said.
We actually interviewed Debby 15 years ago--her daughter recalls that story.
"And I remember her during that story saying, I don't know what bus drivers do when they retire, because it's the best job to be in," said her other daughter Lee Deloch who flew in for the party from Tuscon, Arizona.
Debbie still thinks it's the best job, and she still isn't sure what she'll do next. But she does know one thing:
"I've had 40 years of bus driving and I've loved every minute of it."