J1 Reporters Claire Kilborn and Kayla Constantino
He drives around in a mint Toyota Prius and helps secure Marian’s campus while the students are in class.
Most students, who park their cars on campus, know exactly who he is and all that he does for the school. But, few may know that he has two granddaughters who are current students, and that he has been at Marian for 11 years.
That’s right, Richard Hutfless, one of the two van men, has been serving the Marian community since the 2005-2006 school year. His favorite part of his job is, “Just being here and being with everyone,” he said.
About three or four years ago, the Performing Arts Center was being built. “We had to have the parents wait until 3:20 p.m. to pick up their daughters so we could let the [students] leave before them. That got a little dicey at times,” he said. The new situation ended up working out much better than expected.
Before working at Marian, “I worked Kmart for 30 years and retired from there,” Richard said. After retiring, Hutfless took care of his grandchildren with his wife. His wife passed away, so he came out of retirement. “A friend of mine was the maintenance manager here and I knew him from when I picked up my grandson at St. Philip Neri. I came in and got the job,” Hutfless said.
On a more personal side, Hutfless has four children and seven grandchildren. “Holly Banark, who is a senior, and her sister Katie, who is a freshman, are my two granddaughters. I don’t get to see them often, but it’s nice knowing that they are here,” he said.
Holly loves that her grandpa works at Marian. “It’s fun having him around because he loves his job and everyone he gets to meet,” Holly said. “My grandpa being the van man also has its perks,” she said. One day, she came late to school because she was sick. The only parking spots were in sophomore lot, so her grandpa gave her a ride up to the door.
Hutfless will do that for anyone. One rainy day, senior Morgan Stessman had to run out to her car and Richard helped. “There was this one time where I left my windows down in my car and torrential downpour ensued and I had to go roll them up and he gave me a ride up soph lot,” Stessman said.
Whether you have a special story or not with Hutfless, everyone appreciates all that Hutfless does for the school and to keep us safe. He’s always around to give you a ride up the sophomore lot hill or to brighten your day with a smile.