John Grieve was born on the 9th July 1944 in Shepparton Victoria and for fifty years has carried on the family tradition of providing school bus transport in the Goulburn Valley. He has buses in his blood. Commencing in 1938, John's father Theo operated the first school bus service in Shepparton. His first bus cost 40 pounds and by the time he retired in 1974 the service had five school runs.
John started driving buses with the family business in 1965. When his father retired he purchased one of the school runs and another two in 1976. The Grieves have driven generations of Toolamba children to school. John and his wife Jenny worked hard maintaining the fleet in immaculate condition, and meeting challenges like the computer based audit system.
John, affectionately called Hooky Junior was loved by his school age passengers and a hero to some. One mother tells the story of her son when starting school, refused to wear the socks to go with his uniform. He wanted long socks like his friend John the bus driver always wears. Yes, John was well known for his uniform of shorts and long socks.
When Toolamba School burnt down, John transported the children to Mooroopna and donated a considerable sum to the school, specifying that it had to be spent on the staff as the students' needs were well met. John maintains strong links with the school, often dropping in for a cuppa.
In 1968, when John had been driving for just three years, he undertook a journey vastly different from his daily school runs. A group of indigenous men had been picking fruit in the Goulburn Valley. They had flown from Alice Springs but were unwilling to fly home. A bus was chartered to drive them home. With two drivers, the journey was done with minimal stops. This was a difficult time for John as his younger sister was dying and John was asked to drive so his father could stay home. Sadly his sister died while he was away and John missed her funeral. This going the extra mile is very typical of John's approach to life and to the running of his business.