In September 2016, Renita Smith was on her last route of the day, driving children home from school. This Maryland based bus driver says that it was just another regular day on the job, until she made it to her third stop. Reita says that her brake light began blinking. Soon after, her kids tell her they noticed a smoke smell on the bus, which then became engulfed in flames.
This is when Renita began to evacuate all of her kids from the burning bus. A mother herself, Renita’s maternal and problem solving instincts kicked in and she began to get the children to safety.
One by one, she lead the children – whose ages ranged from four to 10 – off the bus in a single-file line.
But she didn’t stop there. Renita got back on the burning bus and made certain there were no remaining children onboard.
After she saved the lives of 20 kids, she was invited on the Ellen show. During the interview, she was shocked by what the host said to her. Ellen found out that Renita is a single mother of two who is living paycheck to paycheck, and wanted to create a surprise that would help show appreciation for her heroism. Renita is completely blown away with what Ellen presents her with, covering her eyes in disbelief. Watch the video to find out the brave bus driver’s surprise!