Middle schoolers shamefully haze a 68-year-old bus monitor
Bus monitor Karen Klein ended up in tears as middle school students from upstate New York launched a scathing attack on the 68-year-old grandmother. The despicable digs which continued for over 10 minutes, were captured on video by a cellphone camera.
The video, recorded on the bus by a student last Monday, is hard to watch. For 10 full minutes, Karen Klein is battered by below-the-belt comments and harassed by harsh abuse from students at Greece Athena Middle School near Rochester, New York.
"You're so fat," says one boy. Meanwhile another kid tells her to "Put her sunglasses back on," because she's "looking like a troll." Klein tries hard to ignore the attacks and turns to peer out of the window, but the hammering continues and for the grandma, there is no escape.
The absolute low point comes when a male youth tells her that she does not have family because "They all killed themselves because they didn't want to be near you." Media outlets have since revealed that one of Klein's sons killed himself 10 years ago.
The 68-year-old grandmother told the Democrat and Chronicle
I was trying to just ignore them, hoping they would go away and it doesn’t work. Trust me, they didn’t go away.
Klein said she never even reported the incident and even defended the kids saying they "Weren’t always that bad," but the video was posted to Facebook, removed, and then posted to YouTube
by a user named 'CapitalTrigga.' It has gone viral, having been viewed over 1.6 million times.
CapitalTrigga reveals that the incident occurred on bus number 784 and names several of the youths involved, but the user is quick to write:
I had nothing to do with this, I saw the video on Facebook and uploaded it here to show the world how messed up these kids are.
The response and overwhelming support for Klein because of the video has been phenomenal. One person commented below the clip:
What horrible little miscreants. I bet your parents are so proud of you.
This makes me hate the next generation even though I am in the next generation the world is so f***** up.
One Toronto man was so profoundly impacted by the video that he launched a fundraiser for the grandmother writes Toronto's Globe and Mail
Max Sidorov saw the video of the bullying and instantly went online to raise money for Klein. In less than 24 hours, he had raised more than $175,000. He did so, he said, to give the 68-year-old the "Vacation of a lifetime." Donations for Klein have now exceeded $200,000.
Mr. Sidorov, a 25-year-old nutritionist and York University graduate told The Globe
, "I really felt for Karen because I have some experience myself with bullying." Born in the Ukraine, Sidorov moved to Canada when he was nine years old and endured bullying at school for speaking with an accent.
School district officials and police are investigating the incident and said that any "Students found to be involved will face strong disciplinary action." Authorities did state however that some of the names of pupils being circulated "Are inaccurate."
Meanwhile, Karen Klein will appear tonight on AC360
, where she will talk with
Anderson Cooper about her ordeal.