LA GRANGE, TEXAS - A possible school bus tragedy was avoided thanks to quick thinking by a La Grange ISD middle school student and a high school student.
According to La Grange ISD Superintendent Bill Wagner, around 5 p.m. on Thursday, a school bus driver suffered a "medical emergency" on the SH 71 bypass near the Colorado River bridge and began driving erratically.
"We were riding and I noticed he started going off the road. And then we tried to make a turn, but he ended up in the ditch a few times," seventh-grader Karson Vega said. "He was swerving and he almost hit cars."
That's when he realized something was wrong with the driver. He walked up to the front of the bus as they were approaching the SH 71 bypass near the Colorado River bridge.
"He was about to go off of it because I was up there trying to talk to him and tell him to stop the bus. And he said he was going to the store. So I took the wheel over and I stopped the bus. I didn't want to die," Vega said.
And neither did 7-year-old Jax Elliott, who was also on the bus.
"I think he was gonna go off the bridge," Elliott said.
His mother, Sarah Elliott, couldn't believe what happened when she found out.
"It was terrifying knowing my son's life was in a seventh-grader's hands, you know? But thank god he was on the bus," she said.
Some are calling it fate.
"What's really wonderful about this story is the fact that both students that took action very seldom ride that bus. And that day, both of them were on the bus. It was almost like it was meant to be," Wagner said.
Kyler Buzek, a sophomore at La Grange High School who also jumped into action, called authorities for help while keeping the younger kids on the bus calm.
There were a total of seven students on the bus, including Vega and Buzek.
Wagner said the driver is going to be OK. He is undergoing a number of tests to determine whether he is fit to get behind the wheel of a school bus again.
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