WASHINGTON - WTOP's Commuter Idle winner arrived at his Department of Justice job in style and an hour earlier than normal Thursday morning thanks to a limo ride from his home south of Richmond.
"I don't think I could afford a limousine every day. But God, it was like a dream come true," says Thurmond Alford, WTOP's third Commuter Idle winner.
As a winner, Alford receives $1,000 and a round-trip limo ride between home and work.
Alford commutes seven hours a day, round trip, between his job in Downtown D.C. and Chesterfield County, Virginia, where he lives with his wife and two children. He still denies it's an extreme journey.
"But it's nice to be recognized for the commute I do and the reason I do it - for my family," Alford says.
"It's surprising," Alford says of all the attention he's getting.
"Commuter warrior gets reward" reads the headline in Thursday's Richmond Times Dispatch detailing Alford's commute.
Alford's limo ride to and from work comes compliments of Reston Limousine
"Celebrities, CEO's, and Capitol Hill people," are more usual fares for driver Jeff Fleming. This is his first Commuter Idle winner.
"I'm honored to be part of this special event," Fleming says.
Alford and Fleming chatted for much of the more than 2.5-hour drive, which included at stop at Wawa for coffee, discussing Alford's commute, of course, and wine. "It's awesome. It's been a blast," says Fleming.
Many of Alford's co-workers have enjoyed following his efforts as a Commuter Idle contestant and they plan a big sendoff to celebrate his win in the afternoon.
Alford looks forward to a relaxing ride home.
Some people may associate limo rides with Champagne, but Alford enjoys Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey and fine red wines.
"I'm definitely having a drink going home."
© 2014 WTOP. All Rights Reserved.