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Michele Futch’s class enjoys annual “Christmas bus” ride

Mrs. Michele Futch and her class at Blountstown High took a ride on the Christmas Bus Dec. 16 with Mr. Danny Ryals. The scene was set with wintry skies, cool temps, and holiday music playing in the bus. The students were taken on a tour of the town and enjoyed the “Christmas Bus” experience! Thanks to Mr. Ryals for this holiday treat he brings each year! In fact, he has been shining those Christmas lights for 21 years! He bought the 1972 school bus with 52,000 miles for $600 in 1988 from the First Baptist Church and christened her that Christmas with four strings of lights and a maiden voyage to Blountstown as the “Christmas Bus”. This bus has a colorful history going back to when Mr. John Coxwell drove it for the First Baptist Church. Mrs. Loraine McClellan and Mrs. Marilyn Vincent recall riding in the back of the bus and going over the railroad tracks on Pear Street. Also, Mrs. Futch remembers going to football games and riding to church camp. Mrs. Allyson Howell recalls riding the bus to church and going to Ship Wreck Island for a youth outing. Mrs. Allyson Sullivan rode the bus to Ridge Crest, North Carolina, for camp. She remembers riding up the mountain roads and hanging on for life. Now, the next generation is riding the bus. The youth at First Baptist Church took a ride on the “Christmas Bus” continuing the tradition of their parents. The memories are many for this faded blue bus and she and Mr. Danny Ryals will surely leave a legacy in Calhoun County!

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