Working the phones and social media, New York reporter Bobby Caina Calvan nailed an interview over Zoom with a 15-year-old who survived a charter bus rollover in New York that killed two adults and injured dozens of students on a trip to band camp.
This exclusive interview was a result of hustle, persistence and gentle persuasion. Bobby started by scanning social media and found a post from a man saying his grandson had been on the bus. He reached out and eventually connected with the boy’s father, who gave us an initial interview. But Calvan didn’t stop there. He asked the dad to put us in touch with his son, then talked to the boy’s mother and got her consent for an interview. Then Bobby talked the 15-year-old, Anthony Eugenio, through getting set up on Zoom so he could do the interview from his mom’s moving car. Anthony gave a vivid account of the wreck and described how he crawled out of a window amid screams and splattered blood to escape.
No other news organization was able to reach someone who was aboard the bus in the 24 hours after the crash.