Illinois high school show choir escapes bus fire, goes on to win competition

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Members of the show choir at Wheaton Warrenville South High School have a story to tell after they escaped a burning bus on their way to a competition. (WLS)

Members of the show choir at Wheaton Warrenville South High School have a story to tell after they escaped a burning bus on their way to a competition. But the story doesn't end there.

The Wheaton Warrenville South show choir practices to be pitch perfect, but they couldn't practice for this: their bus caught fire on the way to Wisconsin.

"I was actually sitting right above the wheel that popped and caused the fire," Rachel Neese said. "And we were like, 'Hey, something's wrong.'"

Everyone got off safely, but they lost everything in the blaze: their costumes, their shoes, even their instruments.

The group decided the show must go, and they continued onto Wisconsin. Their parents showed up with old shoes and their competitors even donated used outfits.

"They've offered to go to Walmart for us and go to Target for us. It really is a fantastic community," said Kelsey Nichols, show choir director.

The generosity and extra effort paid off. Wheaton Warrenville South was named Grand Champions of the competition.

The show choir members say their director, Kelsey Nichols, deserves a lot of praise for staying calm and collected throughout the whole ordeal.

The girls nominated Nichols for the Showstopper Award, which is typically given to a star student.

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educationhigh schoolcompetitionfirebuzzworthyIllinois
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