• Svetlana Shkolnikova

Paramus school bus crash: Victim Brendan O'Callaghan welcomed home

The only visible sign of the trauma Brendan O’Callaghan lived through nearly two weeks ago is the twitch of his right eye.

The purple under his left eye has faded. The hospital gown he wore since the day his fifth-grade field trip to Waterloo Village ended in a pile of twisted metal on Route 80 was gone.

On Tuesday, 13 days after a school bus crash took the life of his teacher and a classmate, Brendan put on a navy East Brook Middle School T-shirt and finally went home.

“I’m just going to go back to living a normal life,” the 11-year-old declared to the family, friends and media gathered in his living room. “I feel a lot better.”

Brendan suffered a fractured temple bone, broken collarbone, punctured right lung and bruised orbital bone in the crash but confidently told his school principal on Tuesday that he would be ready to return to school on Thursday.

He’s just itching to go back, said his father, Arnie O’Callaghan.

Unfortunately, Brendan's injuries will likely prevent him from returning to his classmates before the end of the school year. The blinking of his right eye is one of several lingering symptoms of a concussion, O’Callaghan said.

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