A grandfather in Gladstone, Oregon, recently decided to do something very unique for his grandkids this Christmas.
“Every year we make a big deal and every week coming into Christmas, advent, every week we give them a gift,” Doug Hayes said of this year’s special gift, according to KENS 5.
Video footage captured by a family member showed the pajama-clad children gathered on their porch steps, waiting for the big surprise to arrive.
Moments later, a yellow Ward school bus with the words “Grandfather Express” painted on the side and a big red bow on the front pulled into the driveway.
“It’s a bus!” one of the kids exclaimed, adding, “You got a bus?!”
All ten of the children attend a small Christian school in the area that does not offer a bus service, so Hayes wanted to make sure their morning drive to school was special.
“I thought, gee whiz, maybe there’s some way that I can give them a memory that will last all their life,” he explained.
Christian Hayes said the gift was totally unexpected.
“I was really stunned. I never expected him to buy a bus,” he commented, adding, “I think my friends are all going to be stunned.”
In 1933, blacksmith David H. Ward founded Ward Body Works, the company that originally made the yellow school bus’s bodies from wood.
“By the 1970s, the company was the largest school bus manufacturer in the world,” according to the Encyclopedia of Arkansas.
Now, the kids cannot wait to show their new ride to all of their fellow classmates.
“I think they’re gonna say, ‘Wow, you get to ride a bus,'” another of the grandchildren said, adding, “No one else does.”
Hayes noted that the unique nature of the gift makes it that much more special.
“Well, there is a sense of pride and excitement, I thought, ‘Who does this? This is crazy,'” he commented. “So, we’re so excited about it, and it’s something that we are hopeful they’ll carry into their lives.”