FEBRUARY 24, 2023 - On December 11, 2022, during its annual awards ceremony, GoDurham inducted 16 bus operators into the Million Miler Club, a title that honors bus operators who have driven a million miles each or more without a preventable accident. The City of Durham joined GoDurham in celebrating these achievements by honoring the Million Miler Club at the latest City Council meeting on Monday, February 20, 2023.
"Keeping Durham safe, thriving, and moving is a priority for the Department of Transportation, and these 16 Million Mile Club Members embody that spirit," stated Sean Egan, the Director of Transportation for the City of Durham. "Driving a 40-foot bus on our City's busiest streets is no small feat – and do so for 1 million miles without a preventable incident exemplifies the dedication that our GoDurham drivers have in keeping our City moving with safe, reliable and affordable transit."
Combined, GoDurham’s Million Milers drove over 17 MILLION MILES without a preventable accident. One operator, Frank Burgess, achieved the amazing feat of 2 million miles without a single preventable accident while driving GoDurham’s fixed route service.
“I have been truly blessed by God to drive through the city of Durham and do it for more than a million miles,” said Frank Burgess. “…blessed to continue to do what I love.”
Many of the Million Milers have driven for GoDurham for over 15 years, needing a minimum of 12 years to reach the million miles of service. “You learn a lot driving this long!” said Maratha Hammie regarding her 20 years of service to GoDurham. “It takes a strong person to do this. It feels special.”
“Being a part of the ‘Million Miler’ is an extreme honor!” stated Johnny Tindall, a bus operator of 20 years. “I have always enjoyed helping people and being a positive influence to those around me.”
“I never thought I’d get this far,” said Gary Lennon, a bus operator for over 24 years. “[To reach a million miles] I learned to adjust and work with many different people [while driving]. I’m thankful.”
“It means a lot to me, coming out here and working,” said Danita Rice, a bus operator of 20 years. “It means a lot for them to appreciate me [with Million Miler].”
Bus operator Tonia Burnett follows her father in reaching the million mile feat. “My father Percival Patterson, who is a Million Miler also, suggested that I apply with DATA [which used to be GoDurham]. It was one of the best suggestions ever.”
City of Durham Councilwoman Javiera Caballero delivered the proclamation and GoDurham’s Director of Operations Matthew Wrenn introduced the attending operators to the council. The Million Miler Club will continue to honor any bus operator who drives a million miles without accident for the foreseeable future. The City of Durham and GoDurham are grateful for all the work GoDurham bus operators do to keep our city moving.