Bus Driver Prevented From Wearing Hat
Reported By: Valerie Hoff (link also has video of this story)
Web Editor: Michael King
Last Modified: 5/25/2007
A Gwinnett County bus driver wanted to show support for veterans who lost their lives fighting for our country. So today, the last day before Memorial Day, he wore a patriotic hat.
Gary Rolley, who’s a vet himself, said he was ordered to take the hat off. A supervisor told him it wasn’t part of his uniform. Rolley is proud of the four years he served in the Navy. He is proud to be an American. “I love my country,” he said.
Rolley said he is paying tribute to all veterans by wearing his American Legion hat, but the he said that didn’t’ go over well with his bosses at the Gwinnett County Transit Authority. “The supervisor said, ‘You are you have uniform; you have to take that hat off.’ I explained this was a hat I wear for the holiday.”
Rolley said he continued to wear the hat on his bus route. “As we were going down the road, a second supervisor radioed me. He said, ‘What do you have on your head?’ I said, “Why are you asking me that?” And he said ‘Take that hat off now,'” Rolley explained.
Rolley said he turned the bus around and went back to headquarters. “I said ‘I’m sorry, I got sick over this. I’m sick to my stomach, and I’m going home sick’,” Rolley said. “I turned around and I left.” Rolley said patriotic hats have been allowed in the past, and Santa hats are allowed at Christmastime, so he doesn’t understand why the rules have changed.
“It’s just to me a slap in the face to our veterans,” Rolley said. He said he wore the hat on Friday because he has the day off on Monday — Memorial Day. He said he plans to spend Monday honoring American veterans. The general manager of the Gwinnett County Transit Authority said that Rolley was asked nicely to wear the proper uniform, and he opted to go home. John Autry said there is a standard issue hat that all bus drivers are required to wear.
Way to go Rolley. I support you – America supports you. We need to honor our fallen and all our Heroes in uniform or who have worn it in the past .
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