The following was posted on Facebook by Great Falls mom Kelsie Semple on Tuesday, February 27th, 2018. E-City Beat is publishing the post with Kelsie’s permission.
The content is unedited. There are minor formatting edits for easier readability.
You can find responses from Big Sky Bus Lines and the Great Falls Public School District in KFBB’s news footage here.
“After what could have been a tragic event, I feel that it is my obligation AS A MOTHER to let everyone, who has young children that attend the Skyline Preschool, and ride Big Sky Bus Lines to school everyday, know what happened to my FIVE year old this morning!
At 8:06 this morning, I put my five year old daughter on bus #19 to start her every day routine to the skyline preschool. At around 945am, I received an automatic phone call saying my daughter was marked absent today. I then messaged my daughter’s teacher immediately, questioning why she was marked absent when I had placed her on the morning bus myself. She replied that my daughter was not at school and that she was going to call Big Sky Bus Lines, and told me ‘not to panic’. She called me after about 10 minutes and told my daughter never got off the bus! At this point I am put in a complete panic and wondering where my daughter is!!
Without any hesitation, I started to drive to the bus depot.
On the way there, a deputy from the Cascade County Sheriff’s Office called me and let me know that he had my daughter! So thankful that I put my name and number on the inside lining of her coat, I was able to meet up with him and the other families who had so graciously pulled off the side of the road to stay with my sweet Presley. Did I mention she was on the Old Havre HIGHWAY?!
She had fallen asleep on the bus and woke up at the bus depot, where she was able to push open the bus door and then run to find someone else because she was all alone. The families had said she was waving at cars on the side of the highway. And she described to me that she was “waving at people for help”.
My only intention in letting you all know about this extreme, unfortunate event is to, hold someone accountable! It is completely unacceptable!! If the bus driver and the teacher’s aide were following appropriate protocols, my daughter would NOT have been left on that bus, and would be enjoying her day at school, instead of being scared to be left alone again!
‘My only intention in letting you all know about this extreme, unfortunate event is to, hold someone accountable! It is completely unacceptable!! If the bus driver and the teacher’s aide were following appropriate protocols, my daughter would NOT have been left on that bus, and would be enjoying her day at school, instead of being scared to be left alone again!’
I can’t describe the feeling that came over me after hearing all of this happen this morning. And I am so unbelievably grateful for those who stayed and waited with her, and that no serious harm came to Presley today.”