Transportation 2014

ChrisJarrettChris Jarrett

Coach Operator – 6 Years

Has worked at TARC since 2009. Wife, Diane; children, Leonda, 24; Brandon, 23; Bria, 20; Ke’Jane, 16; Brennen, 4.

I don’t even look at Facebook. You get to know the people riding on your bus and you want to help them out, just like you would a friend or family member.

[from Facebook]

TARC coach operator Chris Jarrett gets to know his regular passengers and lends a helping hand when he can without ever drawing attention to himself.

All that changed on Sept. 4 when, to Chris’s surprise, one of his simple acts of kindness went viral on social media and became the topic of a popular news story.

Chris, 41, and a TARC driver since 2009, was aware of a preschooler named Tommy and his mother, Rosshell, regular passengers on his route – the #19-Muhammad Ali. As the proud father and stepfather to five including four-year-old son Brennen, Chris also knows boys and how fast they can outgrow their clothes.

Chris has made a habit of giving away slightly worn clothes, hats, shoes and other items his own children have outgrown including to his TARC passengers. “If anyone can use them, I’m glad to help out,” he said.

So he made a plan to give some of Brennen’s slightly used items to Tommy. But this time, word of Chris’s good deed got out in a big way because of other appreciative passengers. When he distributed bags of gently used items to Tommy on his bus, a passenger took pictures and posted the news on Facebook.

The entry had hundreds of “shares,” and 5,000 “likes” within a few days. Jarrett’s act of kindness was called, “beautiful,” “a blessing,” “the greatest story I’ve seen on Facebook,” and one writer said, “there definitely is a special place in heaven for people like this.” Then the media came calling and Chris was featured in a story on WDRB-41 about his good deed.

“I don’t even look at Facebook,” Chris said. “You get to know the people riding on your bus and you want to help them out, just like you would a friend or family member.”

Chris said he had earlier asked Tommy’s mother if he could use some gently used clothing and she was skeptical at first. At a lay over stop at 35th Street near Park Duvalle just before 5 p.m. on Sept. 5, Chris’s wife, Diane, pulled up with the bags of clothes. Chris and Diane presented the clothes to Tommy as he boarded the bus with his mother.

Tommy was “very excited,” Chris said. So was Chris’s son Brennen who parted with the clothes he had outgrown. “He was ok with giving away the clothes but he really liked seeing me on TV,” Chris said.

Nominated by Jon Reiter

elimike (1)Eli Mike

Chauffeur – 2.5 Years

Eli is the consummate professional chauffeur, he came to us by chance and we have benefited greatly by having him as part of our team.

90/10…that’s what my best friend & class act wife of 37 years and I teach our sons…nobody has a perfect life, 10% is what happens to you and 90% is how you react to it. My father owned a produce market on old Haymarket on Jefferson street, I grew up learning what a great work ethic was at home and at work. My mom and dad did what they had to do and didn’t complain about it.

Hospitality is extremely important. We are in the people business. We make them laugh, we make them smile, we give the guest more than they expect. We all have tough moments, and my job is to make their time with me a good experience.

[from Facebook]

As a professional chauffeur Eli has excelled, taking the time to learn that being a chauffeur is more than just driving but caring for the comfort of the passenger. Eli has built a long call list of clients by taking our company motto of Service to the Extreme beyond EXTREME.

His willingness to do the various types of charters from airport work to the long bourbon tours endears him to the management team at R & R be cause no is not heard very often when an assignment is offered.

Nominated by Pat Kiesel

BobWhiteBob White

Driver and Tour Guide – 2 Years

Louisville native Bob White has worked with Mint Julep Tours as a tour guide and driver since March 2012. Prior to joining Mint Julep Tours, Bob spent a decade with Kentucky-based Landmark News Service as a reporter and photographer covering central Kentucky. In addition to his experience reporting the news of Bourbon country, Bob acquainted himself with area whiskey producers when he garnered their direct support for a series of multi-sport adventure races in Bardstown and a pair of paddling events in Spencer and Bullitt counties.

Not afraid to get his hands dirty, Bob donned the hat of Mint Julep’s fleet maintenance manager in early 2014. The fun of bourbon and Bob’s love of Kentucky makes Mint Julep Tours a perfect home for the 40-year-old father of two. And the ongoing challenges of maintaining a fleet of varied makes will ensure this man of many hats doesn’t get too bored.

Bob is the MJT “man of all trades”. First and foremost, he is a knowledgeable, educated and versed tour guide we employ. He fully appreciates the history, culture and traditions that make us unique in Louisville, Ky. He also carries the extra responsibility for keeping our vehicles safe, compliant and running in great condition. Bob has always shown a willingness to do “whatever it takes” to create a positive, trouble free and enjoyable environment for our guests, employees and partners. He is extremely respected by all who work with him and he works very long days to insure that everyone is satisfied and happy before he rests. As one of the first people from Louisville that visitors speak with prior to coming to town, we should all be thrilled that Bob is a remarkably gifted and friendly ambassador to this city we all serve and love to promote.

Nominated by Sean Higgins