A pickup driver was killed and his two passengers critically injured when their truck collided with a school bus in Saunders County Thursday morning. Eleven students from East Butler Public Schools suffered minor injuries.
With their mother's permission, Josh Christan, 8, and his sister Bella, 5, spoke exclusively to WOWT 6 News outside the hospital in Wahoo.
"I just looked up and saw the truck. I felt a boom and bumped my head a little," said Josh.
I had to get out of the bus and we couldn't go to school," said Bella.
Fifty-year-old Steven Jedlicka of Schuyler was pronounced dead at the hospital. The other two passengers were identified as Terry Silvester, 50, of Schuyler and Cory Silvester, 41, of Richland.
Sheriff Kevin Stukenholtz said the bus, driven by 59-year-old Lyle Divis was going westbound on County Road H when it collided with the pickup southbound on County Road 29 at an intersection with no stop signs or traffic signals about six miles northwest of Valparaiso around 7:30 a.m.
The names of the two passengers in the pickup truck are being withheld pending notification of relatives.
Six of the students were taken to Wahoo and five were treated in David City.
"It could have been a lot better if the occupants of the pickup had been wearing their seat belts," said Sheriff Stukenholtz. "I think they would have been standing here right now."