Los Angeles - (NBC) - Brian English and John Sanchez are the guys to have around when a field trip goes wrong.
The two men stopped to help children escape a burning school bus Wednesday on Los Angeles' 101 Freeway. Two children suffered minor smoke inhalation when the school bus caught fire on the southbound freeway.
A teacher aboard the bus said she felt a lurch before the bus stopped. Then flames began shooting from near the engine bay and spreading back toward the passenger area.
That's when Sanchez and English arrived.
"I saw the kids and thought, 'I've got to stop,'" Sanchez said.
English said he kicked open the front door and helped the bus driver, who was "pretty stressed out." He found a fire extinguisher and tried to put out the fire.
Sanchez manned the rear emergency door.
"The kids were small enough that we could carry them down one at a time," Sanchez said.
They also walked down the aisle of the bus to make sure everyone had gotten out the back emergency door.
He said they found a hole in a fence on the side of the freeway and walked the third graders through the hole single file and took them to a nearby business, which gave them food and drink.
The bus was from Flory Academy in Moorpark, and was carrying 23 third grade students, ages 8 and 9, along with teachers and some parent chaperones, on a field trip to the California Science Center.
When asked why he stopped, English said, "Because I could. Because I wanted to."