MVRTA Staff and Passengers Remember Popular Driver Who Died at 51 from COVID-19

Gleason Nicholls at the Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority. (Courtesy photograph.)

Update: Because of this weekend’s storm, visitation and services have been rescheduled to Monday, Jan. 31, from 9-10:30 a.m., at Farrah Funeral Home, 133 Lawrence St, Lawrence.

Merrimack Valley Regional Transit Authority staff and passengers alike are mourning the loss of a popular 51-year-old driver who died Jan. 12 from complications related to COVID-19.

MVRTA Executive Director Noah S. Berger told WHAV Gleason Nicholls, a native of the Island of Trinidad who lived in Lawrence, was a 16-year veteran of the Transit Authority.

“Drivers are a tight knit group and it affected everyone very hard. He was very beloved and he held court in the drivers’ lounge. He was a friend to everyone. He was just a positive force and it was really just an emotional time,” Berger said.

Berger, a recent guest on WHAV’s morning show, said drivers held an impromptu memorial at Buckley Transportation Center in Lawrence where they sounded their horns for 60 seconds.

He said Nicholls, who was fully vaccinated, was a fixture on Route 18, covering the Riverside portion of Haverhill. He also drove Route 14 in Bradford and Route 13 covering Main Street into Plaistow, N.H.

“You know, another thing that touches people is Gleason had a favorite bus, 1705, and it just shows that these are people. They have preferences. Things mean something to them. So, we’re going name the drivers’ lounge after him, and going to have a dedication to him. We’ll put something on bus 1705, so he lives on in that regard and I think that’s given solace to all of us who are grieving the loss,” he said.

Nicholls leaves his wife Dixieann, three daughters, Ternisha, Tamara and Tatianna; parents Carol Nicholls and Sylvon Doyle; and brothers Ainsley, Sigmund and Kerwin; nieces; nephews; cousins; coworkers; extended relatives; and friends.

Comments are closed.