A mother got paralyzing news that her child with Down syndrome had disappeared from a school bus and was stranded on the side of a road.
11-year-old Evan Clifford, a student at Quarryville Elementary School, took a bus by the Solanco School District – something that he does every day.
But on May 20, Evan was completely exhausted and fell asleep during the ride. When the bus arrived at school, the young boy stayed asleep even when someone tried to wake him up, according to WHTM-TV.
His mother, Dana Clifford, said to WHTM-TV: “He stirred a little bit, but he didn’t wake up fully. They got the other kids off the bus, and Evan was still on the bus sleeping.”
It is hard to imagine that nobody checked on him again. Even the driver did not check if all the seats have been emptied before he left the school. The boy was still sleeping peacefully inside the vehicle.
The driver drove the bus back to his house without noticing that Evan was asleep inside the vehicle. The boy’s parents said he just woke up in a different place and had no idea how to go back home.
“I can’t imagine how you cannot check and can just miss a child,” Clifford added.
Even though he was a little disoriented, Evan managed to come up with a plan. He got out of the bus, walked to Route 272 and stuck this thumb out.
Finally, two women stopped to ask if Evan was alright. And because he had memorized his mother’s contact number, the situation was resolved right away.
“They saved him,” Clifford expressed. “I can’t thank them enough for what they did.”
The mother added: “God only knows what could have happened to him. … He could have been raped or murdered.”
The father hopes that what happened to their child will prompt the school toward better vigilance. “This cannot happen to another child,” he expressed.
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