UVALDE – It’s a monumental moment in a child’s life – waiting alone for the bus to take him to school.
It may seem unimportant to adults, but a photographer hopes to capture it in a new light.
“They are really waiting for the bus. You know, the bus goes down the road, and then it’s all over. When they get on the bus, they leave. And here I go,” said New Yorker Magazine photographer Greg Miller.
This year in Uvalde, the moments of waiting for the bus seem to have more weight for the children as for their parents.
Tonight on the #NightBeat we present a photography project that takes place in Uvalde. This is called the “Morning Bus” project. Greg Miller started it ten years ago following the Sandy Hook shootings and was inspired to bring his work here after the Robb Elementary tragedy pic.twitter.com/TDOMGp0gO6
— Leigh Waldman (@LeighWaldman) September 26, 2022
“When you’re there at school, it’s like a few yards, a few yards. And it’s just…I mean it’s very powerful,” Miller said.
Miller traveled from Connecticut to capture the innocence of these children as they return to school after the Robb Elementary tragedy.
“We are not bringing children onto the planet to be slaughtered. They are here to grow,” Miller said.
The “Morning Bus” project is not new and neither is the message behind it. Miller started it in Newtown at Sandy Hook Elementary.
“The following Monday, you know, I was there with my daughter and said goodbye to her when she went to school. And, you know, I thought, will this be the last time I see her? said Miller.
In Sandy Hook, 20 children never had the chance to grow up, six teachers never came home from work.
This turned Miller’s world upside down. He looked at the morning bus routine in a new light.
“If Sandy Hook, the filming of Sandy Hook, didn’t stop us in our tracks… I mean, if Uvalde didn’t stop us in our tracks, what’s it going to take?” he asked.
He never intended to expand the project outside of Connecticut, but the atrocities and loss of life in Robb made him feel called to honor the lives of the 21 victims who were killed there.
“I’m sorry it’s under these circumstances. However, I think it’s actually a way, the same way I felt like I could honor the victims of Newtown. I could honor the victims of Uvalde,” Miller said.
He has been working for several weeks in Uvalde on the project, obtaining permission from parents to photograph their children.
A picture might be worth a thousand words, but Miller hopes it could inspire action to protect our children when they get off the bus.
“I think we agree that childhood is precious, actually. If we agree on that, then I think we can do something,” Miller said.
His project is nearing completion and should be released within the next week.
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