ERIE TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Two road workers jumped onto a moving school bus carrying 31 young students and steered it safely to a stop after the driver apparently suffered a medical problem.
Aaron Pierce and Ken Lambert were returning from their shift patching potholes Wednesday when they saw the Monroe Public Schools bus swerving at about 5 to 10 mph. Lambert, a volunteer firefighter, had heard over his emergency radio that the bus driver had gone into diabetic shock.
Pierce hoisted himself through a window to steer the bus to a stop.
"There was lots of screaming, lots of crying," he told The Monroe Evening News. "One little girl asked me, 'Are we going to die?' I had to hug her. She was crying her eyes out."
Lambert entered through the emergency exit.
"I went to the back door. Luckily it was an older-model bus and I could open the exit door," Lambert said. "It was chaos. The kids were yelling and crying."
Lambert led the children off the bus and tended to the driver. The students weren't injured but were shaken up.
"This could have ended worse than it did," said Nicole Carter, who had two children on the bus.
"A bunch of parents want to thank them for what they did," she said. "I was terrified. Just as easy as the bus slowed down, it could have sped up, it could have went into a ditch or into oncoming traffic."
Pierce said that he's not a hero, and that he was just doing his civic duty.
"There was no way I wasn't going to get onto the bus," he said.
The men stopped the bus two days after an 11-year-old boy in Cleveland steered a bus carrying 26 other students out of the way of an oncoming tractor-trailer and safely into a bridge support. The bus driver had left the bus engine idling while he filled it at a service station and used a rest room. There were no serious injuries.