Jennifer Hudson Honors Milwaukee Woman Who Saved 37 Students From Burning Bus While Pregnant
On Oct.3, Imunek Williams appeared on The Jennifer Hudson Show, where the award-winning songstress honored her bravery.
Hudson also partnered with Huggies to gift the young mother $15,000 and a mountain of baby essentials, including diapers, toys, and wipes. It was Imunek’s first year as a school bus driver. The inspirational woman also opened up about the challenges she had withstood the previous year. Her fiancé, Shamar, uses a wheelchair after suffering from a blood clot in his spine.
What did Imunek Williams do?
According to CNN, Williams, 24, said, “I had the driver window down and thought the smell was coming from another car at first, but then the smoke started coming through my heater, so I pulled over.”
The then-pregnant mom tried to use her dispatch radio to call for assistance about the unusual smell entering through the rolled-down window. She quickly decided she wouldn’t wait for help and knew she had to get all the students safely off the bus. She credited her motherly instinct as to how she knew what was wrong.
Williams got all 37 students she was transporting on the bus together — those aged from high school to elementary school and ushered them off the bus as fast as she could. Shockingly, she recalled, “Fifteen to 30 seconds after the last child got off the bus, I turned around, and the bus was up in flames.”
Unfortunately, Williams suffered smoke inhalation following the incident, but a doctor deemed her and her baby healthy after the bus fire.
“I’m fine. The baby is fine. I’m just thankful I was able to help those kids. If my son was on that bus, I would want the driver to protect the kids at all costs.”
Local parents and community members gave Williams an outpouring of gratitude for saving their children with her quick thinking. They sent her letters of thanks, and Shemaiah Burks even created a GoFundMe page for the hero who has another child.
“Hi, I want to give recognition to Imunek Williams, the bus driver who saved 37 lives from a burning bus in Milwaukee! She got all the kids off the bus before the bus went up in flames within minutes. She did suffer [from] smoke inhalation, and some of the kids, but they are alive and well. This bus driver is eight months pregnant. Let’s give this hero the recognition she deserves. This money will go toward the new baby and her family. SHE IS A HERO!!!”
Of the $10,000 ask, the fundraising campaign has only raised $6,290.