Family of Nashville's first female bus driver honors her legacy after she passed due to COVID

Elizabeth Duff
Posted at 8:37 PM, Mar 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-05 21:45:32-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — For people who have lost someone to the virus grief and healing are particularly hard during a pandemic.

One of the victims of the virus was Nashville’s first female bus driver who had a huge impact on her family and community.

72-year-old Elizabeth Duff went from being told as a little girl she couldn’t ride in the front of the bus; due to segregation to taking the head seat of the bus in the 70s.

“Sometimes I wondered if she really realized her accomplishment that she made for the women in Nashville,” Elizabeth’s husband Harry Duff Sr. said.

Elizabeth was Nashville’s first-ever female bus driver and it was a major accomplishment she remained very modest about.

“She would tell them she worked for MTA and that she worked there for 30 something years and that was it,” Harry explained.

Sadly, the mother of three died last month due to complications of COVID-19. On Friday, the Duff family held a visitation for her. They took time to say goodbye and remember the good times; like when her oldest son Harry Duff Jr. brought over sweet pastries.

“I would bring them pies, cakes, and donuts just to see that look on her face. It was so genuine and beautiful,” Elizabeth’s son Harry Duff Junior said.

Harry Sr. and Liz were married 55 years and processing the grief of losing her will take time.

Alive Hospice’s Grief Center Director Ali Drescher says that’s normal and the Duff family isn’t alone. She says it’s best to let the grief out.

“That person is going to live with that grief for the rest of their life. They should learn effective ways to manage it,” Alive’s Grief Center Director Ali Drescher said.

Harry struggles with the fact he survived COVID-19 and his wife didn’t, but he’s never going to stop sharing the legacy she left behind.

“She was somebody to look up to,” Harry Senior said.

Alive offers low-cost and free grief counseling for children and adults.

If you’re having a hard time right now and need someone to talk to call Alive’s grief hot line at (615)-963-4732.

For more information about Alive Hospice and services provided; click here: