Taxi driver made 3 trips in wake of Manchester attack to rescue survivors

The people of Manchester speak with a distinct dialect -- known as the Manc accent -- think Peter Noone of Herman's Hermits or Davy Jones of The Monkees.

On Tuesday, Mayor Andy Burnham spoke for the entire city with pride.

"They opened their doors to strangers and drove them away from danger," Burnham said. "They gave the best possible immediate response to those who seek to divide us. And it will be that spirit of Manchester that will prevail and hold us together."

They opened their hearts -- and stood in line to give blood. They tweeted offers of help for anyone in need. One offer of help came from taxi driver Saf Ismail, who drove people to safety. 

"There were so many people coming out and the thing that was getting to me was the age," Ismail told CBS News. 

He described the victims as "young."

"It was like seeing my daughter there. My daughter's 15... and she was supposed to go to the concert," Ismail said. "She was supposed to go but she changed her mind a couple of months ago because she has exams coming up."

Ismail described the people coming out of the arena. 

vigliotti-manchester-cab-driver-2017-5-23.jpg

Saf Ismail, a cab driver in Manchester, drove 24 people to safety in the chaos after the bombing at an Ariana Grande concert. 

CBS News

"They weren't injured but they were crying, shouting, screaming -- just basically, very emotional," Ismail said. "Your emotions are running so high it's like you're seeing your own flesh and blood walking."

Ismail is a Pakistani Muslim who grew up in Manchester, a city that has been described as "dangerous" or a "no-go zone." But Ismail says that is not the Manchester he knows. 
 
"These people are very strong. Very, very strong," he said. 

"We have our differences but we get together and we stay together," he added.

Ismail made three trips and managed to cram 24 people in the back of his van. He offered a safe space amid so much chaos.