Jay Floyd: Mountain Dreams to Community Impact

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Jay Floyd: Mountain Dreams to Community Impact


Jay Floyd driving a bus

Every so often, we have the opportunity to encounter someone truly special, someone who has quietly impacted the lives of thousands of people who call Eagle County home. Jay Floyd is one of those extraordinary individuals. Just a few days before his retirement, we had the privilege to sit down with Jay to talk about his 26-year-long career operating a bus in our community. 

Jay grew up in the heart of Spokane, Washington, the youngest of three brothers. While his parents never skied, they insisted their boys take up the sport. The fond memories of skiing with family and friends would eventually help Jay make a life-changing decision.

After a stint at Spokane Community College, where he played both baseball and football, Jay faced a pivotal moment. He secured a spot on the Whitworth College football team along with a scholarship. However, when a single credit failed to transfer, Jay saw this as an opportunity for a new adventure. He packed his bags and moved to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, in 1979 to pursue skiing.

Jay had one mission in life: work to ski. He was able to make that happen by working maintenance and service industry jobs. In 1984, a friend of his was moving to Vail, CO to work at the Chart House and offered Jay a job doing maintenance for the restaurant. Jay’s dedication kept him moving up the ranks, and he became a server. This is where he met his wife, Carol. Jay Floyd and Wife

“I will always cherish the memories of when I first met Carol. Our bond grew stronger with each adventure we embarked on together,” Jay reminisced.

Their relationship blossomed, and after seven years of dating and countless adventures in Moab, Jay proposed at the dinosaur tracks—a ring hidden in his pocket during a mountain bike ride. They married in 1993 at the Beaver Creek Chapel.

Shortly after Jay and Carol had their two children, Hayden and Ashley, Jay, once again, found himself at a crossroads. The life of a ski bum while owning his own maintenance business was not conducive to the father he wanted to be.

“I need a job with benefits and a more regular schedule. I saw that Town of Avon was hiring bus drivers and jumped at the chance in 1998. Little did I know while the hours were regular, I was the newest driver, so I got all the late-night and drunk bus shifts at the beginning.” said Jay.

Jay Floyd at his retirement party

In 2018, Jay faced his toughest challenge yet: a cancer diagnosis. The benefits provided by ECO Transit were crucial during this time, ensuring he received the necessary healthcare. He opted for a rigorous treatment plan—radiation along with many other treatments, spanning twelve months. During that time, he continued working with unwavering dedication, “I would drive two loops on my route, go to get my cancer treatment and hop right back on the bus and keep driving. I was dedicated to my job and community because that was important to me,” said Jay. Jay embodied the spirit of a true hero and was triumphantly declared cancer-free in 2021

When we asked Jay why he kept working during and after his treatment, he said, “I loved the independence driving a bus gave me. I was in charge, and everyone who got on my bus was a customer of mine. I loved getting to know our passengers, and I feel enormous pride that they trusted me to be such an integral part of their daily lives. I’m most proud of my current 16-year streak of accident-free driving and my customer service skills.”

When we asked who his favorite passenger was, he was quick on the draw: “My wife Carol, of course! She would take the bus to work all the time.”Jay Floyd driving a bus

Jay embodies values that so many of us hold true: Family, Dedication, Service and of course Joy. Jay will still do his part to serve our community by picking up some shifts when we need his help at the newly formed EVTA. He did make one thing clear though, ‘I won’t be picking the late night or drunk bus shifts anymore!’

As we celebrate Jay's remarkable career and heroic spirit, we wish him a retirement filled with joy, adventure, and the love of family and friends. Thank you, Jay, for your extraordinary service—you’ve truly earned every moment of happiness that lies ahead.