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Longtime South Colonie bus drivers look back at their careers

"They thought it was pretty funny," she said of the occasions when they would reach the end of the line to get on the bus and see their mother's face smiling down at them from the big black seat.

She now has five grandchildren.

McAllister was instrumental in starting the district's bus safety program, which includes a team of four people that teach students in pre-kindergarten through fourth grade about safety before getting on the bus, while on the bus and getting off the bus. She even illustrated the coloring book the bus safety team passes out to students while teaching them lessons.

McAllister will officially retire Jan. 2, during the winter break and on her 62nd birthday.

Dragon said he plans to come back and be a substitute driver for the district when they need him for a few years after retiring, helping drive students to athletic events and whenever the district needs help. When he is not subbing, Dragon will continue with the Fuller Road Fire Department serving the second of his two-year term as president, and possibly run again for the position. He will also continue to teach fire safety to students in the district, fish and finally use the boat he got three years ago that has never been used, most likely on Lake Champlain, he said.

As for McAllister, she said she is done the day she retires.

When asked what she planned to do in her retirement, McAllister replied, "Anything I want!"

McAllister calls herself a "good shopper" and said she is always finding the greatest deals. She also enjoys many hobbies such as crocheting, painting and gardening.

"This year, I won't have weeds," she said.

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