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Old church bus gets a 2nd chance

January 2, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
An old church bus is getting a second chance to help kids in need in New Mexico."Old Blue," is the name Danny Etter gave an old bus that used to shuttle kids around for his church events.

"Old Blue" was headed for the junkyard, but now the bus is getting a second chance -- and it's all because of a 17-year-old Eagle Scout.

"Instead of it just sitting in the parking lot collecting dust, I'd rather it be transporting children," said Etter.

After doing a little research on the Internet, Etter decided to honor his Native American roots and donate the bus to school children of the Navajo Indian tribe in New Mexico who are in need. But first "Old Blue" was in need of a facelift.

"You might think buffing a car is easy, but 12 feet later and 42 feet long -- that is a lot of buffing," said Etter.

After raising more than $11,000 Etter restored the bus with new wheels, brakes, and seats.

He and his father, the former bus driver, will drive it to Flagstaff, Arizona to deliver it to its new owners.

The bus will not be showing up empty because it was filled with dozens of backpacks, school supplies, and blankets. The items will be donated to hundreds of Native American children who are in need.

"I am really proud that he would think that much, and not just drop off a bus," said father, Jim Etter.

And with more donations coming in at the last minute, it was clear that the 17-year-old had touched a lot more people than expected.

"He's got a good heart. He's got a good head. He's gonna go places. It is good for him, and good for all of us especially now," said donator, Edward Piwowarski.


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