Calgary woman thanks bus driver for saving her life

Shylow Dustin is grateful to be alive and is able to thank the now-retired Calgary bus driver who she says saved her life. The two reunited Wednesday.

“I just said thank you God for sending me an angel because if it hadn't been for him, I don't know what would have happened,” said Dustin.

Last Tuesday, Dustin said she was watering her neighbour's yard when her heart started racing and she felt dizzy.

She went into her apartment, had a bath then decided to go for a walk thinking she was feeling anxious and it would help her relax.

But her heart started racing again and she was having trouble breathing. Dustin said she rang her neighbour's doorbell but no one answered, so she crawled down the ramp to get to the street and managed to dial 911 but couldn’t tell the operator where she was.

“I was disoriented, I couldn’t see, I couldn’t hear, I couldn't focus," she said. "I couldn’t stand up. I thought I was going to die on the street.”

Dustin, who was in the area of Richardson Way and Richardson Link S.W. said cars drove by but no one stopped to help until a Calgary bus driver drove by.

“I saw this lady lying on the sidewalk in quite an uncomfortable position…so I thought well somebody needs assistance so I stepped off my bus and went to her,” said Jean Paul Pouliot.


Pouliot said Dustin seemed a little disoriented so he picked up her phone and was able to let the 911 operator know where she was. He waited until the ambulance arrived.

“It’s been my career to be in service to people and I’ve always, when he opportunity has come around I’ve always taken it,” said Pouliot, who retired three days after the incident.

Pouliot said during his 43 year career, he has helped many people in distress on his bus including people who have had seizures or fallen.

Pouliot laughed when asked by reporters if he was a guardian angel.

“Maybe for a few people.”

Pouliet said his family wasn’t surprised to hear what he did, saying they would expect him to stop.

He said he wondered what happened to the woman but felt his job was done when the ambulance arrived. Pouliet didn’t expect a reunion but says it's special.

“I’m grateful because it’s not very often that you do something kind and come back with a thank you,” aid Pouliet.

“I’ll never forget what this gentleman did ever. He was my angel in a time when I was so scared when you think you’re going to die,” said Dustin, who said she wanted to find the driver to at least be able to send him a thank you card.

Dustin said she spent over 13 hours in hospital that day and has had heart problems before. In January 2020, she had a near-fatal heart attack in her apartment.

Dustin said she hopes if someone sees another person in trouble they will stop to help instead of just driving by.

“The right person stopped for me," she said, "and I thank God every minute of every day.”