Tomball ISD bus attendant ‘famous aunt Carol’ mourned after losing battle with COVID-19

TOMBALL, Texas – Tomball Independent School District lost two transportation employees to COVID-19 this week, including long-time community volunteer and special education bus attendant Carol Steinocher.

“I lost a best friend of 40 years,” said Steven Steinocher, while standing in front of their Tomball home. “I can’t say enough about her. I’m going to miss her bad.”

They married 35 years ago and had two beautiful daughters, Kellsie and Kalynn, who died of a rare cancer in 2013.

“Her mom passed in 1980, and she took over as matriarch of the family,” said niece Candi Baines. “She schedules all our family holidays … and family vacations.”

Mrs. Steinocher joined Tomball ISD as a special education bus attendant 14 years ago.

“She would literally memorize their birthdays,” Mr. Steinocher said. “She’d meet their parents, and get to know them … it was really amazing what she did.”

Many knew her as “aunt Carol” or “famous aunt Carol,” a regular at the local VFW for 30 years, organizing blood drives, delivering pizza to firefighters, and volunteering as a cookoff judge, among many other duties.

“She was just the life of the party,” Baines said. “She was also always there for me no matter what, so I will literally miss everything about her.”

“Even when she would get mad at you,” she added. “I’ll miss that too.”

Tomball ISD bus driver Ray Moreno passed away from COVID-19 last weekend. Mrs. Steinocher had been in the hospital with COVID-19 for two weeks when she passed away on Wednesday, a few days after Moreno.

Tomball ISD said grief counselors would be provided for transportation department employees who needed them.