Dept. of Transportation
Metro Transit Division

King Street Center
201 S Jackson St
Seattle, WA 98104
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From monorail to streetcar, Metros "Driver of the Year" has been behind the wheel for 36 years

John Fabre has been a bus driver in Seattle for so many years, that hes been around longer than the organization he works for. But its his skills not just his longevity that earned Fabre the respect of his peers who voted him King County Metro Transit 2005 Operator of the Year.

Fabres 36-year career started out with Seattle Transit, which became Metro in 1973. During his years with the transit system, he has operated every type of vehicle available buses, trolleys, streetcars, and even the monorail back when Metro operated it for the city.

"John has received multiple commendations from passengers, always the sign of an exceptional bus driver," said Metro General Manager Kevin Desmond. "In this case, the commendations have a common theme that John is extraordinarily kind, courteous and helpful towards his passengers."

Metro managers feel lucky to have Fabre on staff, since he almost went to work for the Seattle Fire Department when he left the Navy.>

"After working in the shipyards for awhile, John was looking for a change of career," said Transit Operations Manager Jim ORourke. "He applied with the Seattle Fire Department and Seattle Transit, declaring that he would hire on with whichever organization offered him employment first. Fortunately for us, Seattle Transit hired John before the fire department could get him."

ORourke said Fabre is an extremely skilled driver, someone he has personally called on to get buses out of tricky situations. During a big snowstorm several years ago, Fabre was asked to drive buses that were stuck on the streets without chains back to the transit base under very poor road conditions.

"John got coaches out of some situations that I would have been hesitant to drive myself, and he did it all in the interest of providing increased service to the public," said ORourke.

Bus riders compliment Fabre on his friendliness, caring attitude, and driving skills:

"this driver is really nice. He talks with the passengers. Greets everyone with a big smile and says Have a nice day"

 "he has a friendly attitude and is service oriented"

 "he is very careful and does not jerk the bus..."

 "he has excellent timing, no matter what the weather."

Fabre was recognized today in a surprise ceremony at Metros Ryerson Base in Seattle. Always observant, and very modest, his supervisors had to go to great lengths to get him off the bus to attend a "special" meeting at the base so they could honor him.

Fabre was raised in Seattle, attending St. Theresas grade school, Washington Middle School, and Garfield High School. After high school, he joined the U.S. Navy. He was in the Navy until 1969, serving two tours of duty in Vietnam. He is a resident of Seattle, and currently drives Route 99 serving the International District, Pioneer Square and the Seattle waterfront.