Greenville Co. student injured when tree crushed school bus desc - FOX Carolina 21

Greenville Co. student injured when tree crushed school bus describes freak accident

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Bus crushed by tree (file/FOX Carolina) Bus crushed by tree (file/FOX Carolina)
Henry Alvarenga (Apr. 11, 2018/FOX Carolina) Henry Alvarenga (Apr. 11, 2018/FOX Carolina)
GREENVILLE, SC (FOX Carolina) -

A Southside High School student is thankful to be back in the classroom after a shocking accident involving a Greenville County School bus in March.

Officials said on Mar. 21, a tree along Old Grove Road uprooted and fell on the roof of the school bus, which was carrying six Southside students. The roof of the bus was crushed in and five of the students on board were transported to the hospital for injuries.

Henry Alvarenga, a sophomore at Southside, said he and his seatmate suffered the worst of the injuries on the bus.

"The doctor said I am supposed to be dead," he said. "If it wasn't for the seats and me ducking down, the tree would've cut my head off."

SLIDESHOW: Greenville County School bus crushed

The bus was just two minutes away from Alvarenga's home when the tree fell. After three and a half weeks out of school to recover, he said he still is suffering pain from injuries sustained in the accident.

"I'm still in a lot of pain, honestly from my neck and my back because my ligaments were disordered in different parts," he said. "The day of the crash I was partially disabled in my legs. I couldn't move them."

Greenville County Schools released surveillance video of the moments when the tree fell on the bus. Alvarenga has watched part of the video - but not much.

"When I saw it, I stopped it a couple seconds after because I felt all the pain again in my body," he said. "I started remember what had happened when I saw the video and I didn't want to remember that."

In an interview with the Greenville County school bus driver, Brenda Copeland, she said her number one concern after the crash was making sure the students were OK. She described the aftermath, saying "God took control of that whole situation."

Alvarenga also turned to his faith after the crash.

"Just remember to always thank God for what happens, even if it's bad, no matter what," he said. "I'm not dead, I'm still alive. I'm going to thank Him. I'm happy I'm alive."

PREVIOUS COVERAGE: Driver describes aftermath of tree falling on Greenville Co. school bus

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