RAPID CITY, S.D. — After forging a third career as a school bus driver for special-needs students attending Rapid City Area Schools, Bill Cook is retiring after more than 16 years behind the wheel, Rapid City Journal reports.

Cook has attempted to retire twice before, once after a nearly 24-year career as a police officer in San Diego, California, and again after working as a national sales representative for Coleman Black Hills Gold, according to the newspaper. He told Rapid City Journal that his career as a bus driver is the first job he is “struggling to retire from.”

After driving motorcoaches for Gray Line for two years, giving tours and carrying Special Olympics competitors to events, Cook started driving school buses for the district. He requested routes for special-needs students, and told the newspaper they “really are very special.”

Cook’s experience has made him a valuable mentor to other special-needs drivers, Dennis Berg, coordinator of student transportation and the school district's warehouse, told Rapid City Journal. Berg also praised Cook for making the students and their parents comfortable.

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