For the past five years, Teresa Stroble has driven a school bus for Spartanburg School District 5 in South Carolina. On the morning of May 9, she was carrying 56 children from Duncan Elementary, Beach Springs Intermediate, and Byrnes High school when she heard two 9th graders yelling that they smelled smoke.

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Teresa immediately drove the bus off the road into a car wash parking lot. Keeping the children calm, she got all of them off the bus within 60 seconds. She took them to a safe location and called 911 as the empty bus burst into flames. Then, as shown above, it exploded. Firefighters arrived minutes later to contain the blaze. One passing driver said, "I saw a large black cloud ahead of me. As I drove by, the heat was so intense I could feel it in my truck." The school district immediately notified all parents that there were no injuries of any kind. Stroble is credited with saving 56 lives that morning. According to the school district, "she is a true hero."