Nearly stranded at school at Geneva, New York
by William A. Ladd
Bus Ride in the Country Side
The year was 1946 or 1947. My memory fails me as to the exact year but the details are accurate!
We had gone to school in the morning as usual. The bus took the high school kids to Geneva High and then to the lower grades at North Street school.
Everything went as it normally did until about noon. Us kids were told there was a blizzard on the way and students were to go back to their homes. Kids who lived in town left and walked back to their homes.
The kids who rode buses were to wait until their respective bus came to pick them up. We were herded into an entryway and the inside doors were locked. Teachers and maintenance people went home. Kids could go outside and wait or they could wait in the entryway. But they could not get to a bathroom if needed.
One by one the buses came and the number of kids was gradually getting smaller. There must have been 6 or so buses straggle in thru the afternoon.
It was getting quite late and there were maybe 20 kids left. Then I saw my Father drive up to the door. He had been called by my mother who told him that our bus was stuck right in front of our house. He left his workplace, (telephone company on Castle street), and bought many loaves of bread, cold cuts and assorted other kinds of foodstuffs. Then he came to get us.
There were at least ten and maybe a couple more kids that lived out our way. We piled three deep in Dad's car. By now it was getting dark. Dad drove to Preemption road and turned west to the intersection of 245 south, better known as the Hall road. The first girl to get out was nearly out of her mind from the experience. Next stop was a half mile farther. I think 4 or 5 kids got out there. Dad drove a few hundred feet more and then he told us to sit there until he got back. He wanted to check the road ahead which often drifted full.
Dad soon came back and said the
road was clear. We had only a few hundred yards yet to go. Dad gunned the engine and we started. A few feet ahead someone tried to flag Dad down. Dad did not stop. He cut right across the lawn of our home. The Flagger did not know we lived there.
The bus was still there, and so were other cars that were bogged down in the snow. Us kids took the groceries to the house. Dad went to see if he could help free the stuck cars. He also told the bus driver that he need not go to North Street school as we had picked them up. That driver was very glad to hear this news!
Mr. Senne, the school trustee was traveling with the bus in case help was needed. His two sons had came with us. The Senne boys were sent home on foot to do the farm chores as there was no telling how long the bus would be delayed. They had maybe a half mile to walk.
By now it was full dark. The bus had managed to leave and pick up the high school kids and within an hour came back. He got stuck again in the very same drift as before.
It was several hours before all the kids either got home or had found a place to stay the night.
There is much more to this story. But I must cut it short now.
However, I must say that the principal of North Street School got into much trouble for leaving all these little kids unsupervised. Dad notified the Chief of police at Geneva about the kids that were still at that school. For any high school kids who could not get home, arrangements were made for meals at local restaurants and for places to stay over night.
William A LaddBarry's Response
- Thanks you very much, William, for this heartwarming story. I think it MAY have been 1947, as a great blizzard hit the prairies
and midwest in February and probably affected New York a day or so later here. See this 1947 photo
about halfway down the webpage.Search
this site for more information now.