GREENFIELD — Tim Essex faced every parent’s worst nightmare Tuesday when he met his son Landon’s bus after school: He was told by the driver the kindergartner never got on the bus.
The news sent Landon’s father into a near-panic, wondering where his son was and hoping Landon had simply missed his ride home from school.
However, after checking with officials at J.B. Stephens Elementary School, where Essex was assured by school staff that Landon had gotten on the bus, he became even more anxious as he and school authorities began looking for his lost son.
Turns out Landon was just fine, sound asleep in his bus seat, two rows behind the driver. She found him some 30 minutes later when she ended her route and made a routine check on the bus.
While Landon was never in danger, and father and son were quickly reunited at the school, Essex said the whole incident could have been avoided had the bus driver simply checked for Landon when she saw his father waiting for him at the bus stop.
“If she would have taken just 30 seconds to take a quick look, she would have saved a lot of people about 30 minutes of grief,” Essex said.