As a heavy equipment operator stationed in Seoul, South Korea, Wiley Trueblood drove everything from earth movers and semi-trucks to tanks.
During the Gulf War, the U.S. Army veteran served as a munitions driver and as the driver for the company's captain, his first navigational challenge. Those experiences, Trueblood says, have provided a unique perspective on his role as a bus operator.
“All I got was a map and some coordinates and I had to get us there,” Trueblood said. “As a bus operator, reading a route map is easy by comparison.”
Trueblood left the Army in 1996 and started a career in vehicle sales. When the pandemic hit, the semi-truck company he worked for closed.
“I took a year off to reflect and found my peace,” he said. “I found job security and stability by working at Metro Transit. It’s a cool challenge each day, and I enjoy it.”
A year into his career as a bus operator, Trueblood has already seen that there are possibilities to grow and been inspired by others. He's also connected with other veterans through Veterans Partner in Transit, an Employee Resource Group.
"I’m going to see how far I can take it,” Trueblood said. “Just like in the service, I show up on time, I’m present, and I do the work.”
While he takes his job seriously, he still likes to have fun on the road. Trueblood regularly cracks jokes and likes to ask if anyone onboard needs a hug, which gets smiles and the occasional taker.
"I found that I have a powerful voice onboard to help people,” he said. “I can be the light in someone’s day.”
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There's no experience required – we'll give you the PAID training you need. You'll earn $26.16 per hour to start and after one year of employment, your hourly wage rate will increase to $27.80 per hour. You'll receive outstanding benefits, such as health care, annual salary increases, a pension plan, an unlimited-ride transit pass. Plus there's growth opportunities. Many Metro Transit managers started their careers as bus drivers.
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