I don't know how to write this. I'll just do my best. Mike Lunsford is gone. He died yesterday, a little more than a week after suffering a stroke. I know that the entire LCPS leadership is in a state of shock and mourning today.
Mike has been the Director of Transportation at LCPS for I don't know how long. He stood astride the link between the old and the new Loudoun County, and became one of the cornerstones of the modern LCPS. He worked for LCPS for over 40 years, starting as a bus driver in the 60s while still a student at Loudoun County High School. If your child rode safely on an LCPS bus for years, as mine have, you owe a lot of that safety to Mike.
He worked his way up to senior administration and provided a special kind of leadership. I want the people who worked for Mike to know how much he believed in them, in their ability to carry out a complex and critical mission. He gave them the framework and the tools with which to do their work, he ensured that they were well trained and held themselves to high standards in a way that gave them confidence in themselves. He left them in good hands... their own.
He was the very definition of unassuming confidence. The Board could always count on Mike to have the information we needed to make decisions, and to make it easy to understand. Nobody was more trusted at LCPS. I never once heard him say an unkind word about anyone, nor heard an unkind word about him.
Mike was one of those administrators who didn't ever work directly with kids anymore, but for whom it was difficult to have a conversation lasting more than a few minutes without the kids he served becoming a part of it. I want the people of the community to know that Mike, and many others like him, invest their whole selves into LCPS purely for the meaning of their work, and that is the community and its children. Mike has lost his opportunity to retire, to sit back and see the result of his efforts over so many years from the outside. We will still benefits from his work for many years to come.
I only knew Mike professionally; I won't pretend to know him the way that his friends did. But I feel a great loss today, personally and for our community. My heart goes out to his wife and his children, and to the many people who worked with him for so long and knew him so much better than I did.