Celebrating Life of Dale Co. Bus Driver

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It has been more than a month since Jimmy Lee Dykes killed school bus driver Charles Poland Jr. and then held a little boy hostage for nearly a week.

Poland’s 66 years of life were celebrated today at a service in Midland City.

Tre’ Watts said, “He was a great man, a brave man, I am just glad to say I had a bus driver like that."

Hundreds packed into the Midland City Elementary School Friday to celebrate the life of Charles Poland Jr, he was killed trying to protect the children on his bus, January 29th.

Lydia Hancock, Mr. Poland's daughter said, "He knew what he had to do and he did it. He knew his job and he knew how to complete his job."

Sarah Cantey- "And Mr. Poland's daughter says everyone has learned something about her father that she has known her whole life."

Hancock said, "That my dad has always been my hero, will continue to be my hero."

One hero among many that filled the cafeteria. Speeches from local and state leaders, congratulated the kids on Mr. Poland's bus for a job well done.

Hancock said, "The teachers had shown them what to do in a situation on a bus and Daddy had gone through what they had to do on the bus and they kept a calm head they knew how to handle the situation."

And as hearts continue to heal, Mr. Poland's family has faith that good will come out of a devastating situation.

Jan Poland said, "I know it beyond a shadow of a doubt because we have Ethan walking around, we have those other precious children,” children that acted beyond their years, working as a team to help each other to safety.

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