Eighth-grader grabs wheel and averts accident after school driver suddenly falls unconscious

BY Nii Ntreh May 5, 2024 4:45 PM EDT
Acie Holland. Photo Credit: Holland Family

When a school bus driver suddenly fell ill behind the wheel and lost control of the vehicle, eighth-grader Acie Holland III sprang into action, took the wheel and averted what could have been a tragic accident. Now, officials are praising the young man’s courage and quick thinking.

Anna Young, the principal at Glen Hills Middle School where Acie attends in Glendale, Wisconsin, informed parents in a letter that “the driver on school bus route 207 experienced a medical emergency, resulting in her temporarily losing consciousness.”

“Fortunately, what easily could have resulted in tragedy was avoided due to the quick thinking of 8th Grade Student, Acie Holland III,” the letter said. The young man had recognized that the driver was not responsive so he rushed to move the driver’s foot off the gas, applied the brake, and securely parked the bus. Young Acie then contacted 911, ensured younger students were okay and also instructed them to contact their parents.

Acie later told a local TV station he was scared but “wanted to just make sure everyone was OK, and that nothing was going to happen while I was there.” He reached out to his grandmother, a nurse, to help with the situation after he had safely parked the bus.

Of his heroics, Acie said, “that just comes from being raised around positive people and being surrounded by positive people.”

According to the National Safety Council, more than 100 people lose their lives annually in school bus-related accidents across the States. A much larger number are injured but most of those who die are inside another car or are pedestrians

American families rely on about 490,000 yellow school buses to transport kids on school days. It is a much safer option than walking to school or being driven in a car, the National Safety Council concluded.