A Sign of Class

This story ran when I was out sick, so excuse my comments about it late.

A Bremerton school bus driver who picked up the job after he retired so he could learn to maneuver rigs as large as the RV he plans to use, decided to learn sign language so he could communicate with a single student.

That’s class.

Although Amber Silvers, 5, has implants that help her hear, she was born profoundly deaf, unable to perceive the sounds of her parents’ voices or her own cries.

When Amber first boarded the bus, peering at him through purple-framed glasses, Graden wanted to make her feel comfortable but he didn’t know how.

Graden first learned some basics from Amber’s mother, Elaine Silvers. Then he took classes to learn more.

“It was like he was saying she is somebody worth talking to,” Elaine Silvers said. “It meant a lot to us.”

No doubt.

One thought on “A Sign of Class

  1. Steven, Thank you for giving this story its due, even if it is a little late. I had the privilege of being at the Bremerton School Board meeting when they presented Mr. Graden with a recognition award for his efforts. I am not ashamed to say that there were tears on my face when everyone in the audience gave a standing ovation to Mr. Graden. We are fortunate to have such a humble individual, in our community, who steadfastly goes about his job in the best way he can. Someone like Mr. Graden who sees a need and goes out of his way, on his own time, to make a difference. Thank you Gary Graden. You are much more than “just a bus driver”.

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