A video posted on YouTube of a 68-year-old grandmother being mercilessly bullied by a group of children on a school bus has resulted in an online collection of $375,000 (£240,000) being raised by outraged viewers.
Karen Klein, a school bus monitor in New York, was vilely taunted and tormented by a gang of four 13-year-old boys.
The shocking 10-minute video shows the disgusting tirade the youngsters directed at the tearful granny, calling her 'fat,' 'ugly' and a 'troll'. As she cried, the children jabbed her.
One student told her: "You don't have a family because they all killed themselves because they don't want to be near you." Heartbreakingly, Ms Klein's oldest son killed himself 10 years ago.
However, magnanimous Ms Klein told CBC's that she decided not to press charges against the youngsters "because these kids - they're kids."
"I'd hate to see it go in their file or whatever. They're only 13 years old," she said. "Middle-school children are a different breed of children."
Since the video went viral Karen says she has been hugged in the street by strangers and received messages of support:
"I can't believe the people and how nice they've been. I mean strange people stop by and they give me a hug," she said.
One man was so disgusted by the bullying, he started a fund raising campaign to raise money to send Karen on holiday.
Max Sidorov, of Toronto set a goal to raise $5,000 (about £3,700) for Karen. He told CBC News he had suffered bullying as a young Ukrainian immigrant from Ukraine, and when he learned that Karen only earned $15,506 (just under £10,000) a year he decided to raise the money to give her a good holiday.
"Lets give her something she will never forget, a vacation of a lifetime!" he wrote on the fund-raising website.
The drive has now exceeded all expectations with more than $375,000 being pledged.
Mr Sidorov told CBC Radio that he hoped the money would give Karen the opportunity to stop working:
"I think she's going to retire with this money, and I hope she does. It's enough money to send her on a very much earned retirement," he said.
Karen said the father of one of the abusive teenagers offered her a sincere apology and added that a written apology from his son would be forthcoming.
Poor, poor woman. How could those kids be so cruel? And why didn't anyone else on the bus stop them?!
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