And then Tim Tebow called

twitter trendsmap Albany tebowcallmatt

A screengrab of the Trendsmap for tweets in the Capital Region Monday night around 10 pm.

Remarkable: A hashtag campaign on Twitter Monday night -- #tebowcallmatt -- got Tim Tebow to call Matt Hardy, one of the teens seriously injured in the fatal crash this past Saturday on the Northway.

The campaign resulted in what was apparently a huge surge of tweets -- the hashtag was trending nationally for a while Monday night. There were also two related campaigns -- #MissyCallBailey and #DaleyCallBailey -- trying to get Olympic swimmer Missy Franklin and/or British Olympic diver Tom Daley to call Bailey Wind, the other teen seriously injured. (Wind is a diver planning to attend the University of Tennessee.)

Update: Franklin tweeted late Monday night that she called Bailey Wind and got her voicemail. "Would still love to talk to her."

The two other teens in the vehicle that night -- Chris Stewart and Deanna Rivers, both Shen students -- died from injuries sustained during the crash. The Saratoga County DA's office says State Police are reviewing evidence from the crash, and waiting on a blood alcohol content test, as they consider charges against the driver of the other vehicle.

As we watched some of the tweets stream by tonight, one by Patti Gibbons seemed worth highlighting: "The challenge, #518Family, is to live what you're tweeting tonight for more than a few days. Make a life change for the better."

screengrab: Trendsmap / Google Maps


There are those who say the interwebs are breaking down personal connections and meaningful interactions with fellow human beings. Maybe tonight, our #518Family has finally put this myth to rest.

I truly don't know what to make of this. When I had friends who died in high school (some under very similar circumstances), I don't recall thinking, "A call from a celebrity I don't know would certainly help in this time of trouble." In fact, I felt quite the opposite, and was mightily offended by the brief flurry of media attention to what felt like a very intimate tragedy. If that's what the kids involved wanted, fine, but I personally don't understand the purpose.

I'm with Carl. Also, maybe they'd have better luck with #mcelroycallmatt ;)

Dont think purpose. Think of a tragedy that hit a family, friends etc. and that tragedy may somehow be lessened (if only for a few minutes) because many people are willing to recognize and share the incredible grief you are experiencing. Every little bit helps.

Ah, I misread- I didn't see that Tebow *already* called. That's cool! But still, focusing hundreds of people's good will / intentions to getting a call from a celebrity instead of donating something to the family is a strange concept.

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