Hero: Young L.A. Jailer Frees Dozens from Burning Bus

An ordinary drive to work on Sunday night turned into a heroic moment for Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department custody assistant Jesse Hernandez, who is being credited for saving 42 people who were stuck in a burning bus in Hacienda Heights.

Hernandez, who is assigned to the North County Correctional Facility, was reportedly driving along the westbound 60 Freeway on his way to work Sunday night when he noticed flames shooting from the rear engine compartment of a charter bus that was stopped near the Hacienda Boulevard off-ramp.

According to the local ABC affiliate in Los Angeles, Hernandez, who is also a National Guard reservist, pulled over, ran towards the bus and forced the door open, allowing for all the adults on board, including the driver, to exit without injury. The passengers had reportedly been frantically hitting and kicking at the exit door which was stuck.

ABC notes that Hernandez, who has been a member of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department since July 2012, aspires to be a deputy in the future.

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