Albany’s Larry Walley is a driving force in the area, and it doesn’t look like he’s putting on the brakes any time soon.
The 62-year-old retired Albany County Deputy Sheriff and army reservist never really stopped working, and he’s always reinventing life for himself and others.
A good example of his creativity in his post-retirement years is his involvement with the New Scotland Seniors, where he has managed to turn bus driving into an art.
What started out as a way of spending more time with his aging mother has blossomed into a one-man travel agency on a budget. His knowledge of the area, love for seniors and his ability to stretch a dollar on their behalf has transformed some of the senior day trips into “Hey!” trips.
“I started doing little runs for the town with a 14-passenger bus,” he said. “Then, I began researching places that were accessible and interesting.”
The excursions don’t have to be elaborate to be fun. He points to one of his favorites: Mt. Greylock during foliage season. He picks up a sub platter that he later wheels in his cooler to the Hanscom Lodge. For five bucks, it’s nothing short of a steal and a meal with a view.
When he’s not truckin’ through autumn’s beauty, he may be seen tooling up to Johnson Hall in Johnstown, Olana near Hudson or to the Home Front Café in Altamont.
He trades his four wheelin’ for three wheels when he hops on his striking trike and helps the Blue Knights International Motorcycle Club cruise through some of the scenic roads of the Capital District — when the retired law enforcement personnel are not raising funds for charity.
He also uses that same Honda to proudly help the Patriot Guard Riders literally surround grieving families of fallen soldiers during services at funeral homes, wakes and burials. This group was born out of recent protests at the sites of such memorial services. The Patriots may also be there when the casket is lowered off the plane at the Albany Airport in a moving show of respect.
All of this is worthy of a salute. Ride on, Larry!
Robert J. LaCosta has been writing about seniors for over 30 years. Suggestions for future columns are welcome. To receive his free inspirational daily blogs, email him at [email protected] or call 435-1250.