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Men Who Captured ‘Miracle On Hudson’ Video Speak Out For First Time

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork)– Hollywood’s take on the “Miracle on Hudson” opens up in theaters Friday.

Many of us remember the unforgettable images from seven years ago when a US Airways flight landed in the Hudson River.

Passengers of US Airways Flight 1549 stand on the wing of the plane in the frigid waters of the Hudson River.

Passengers of US Airways Flight 1549 stand on the wing of the plane in the frigid waters of the Hudson River.

Now for the first time, we’re hearing from the men who made the video possible, CBS2’s Dave Carlin reports.

On the big screen is the Hudson River splashdown of US Airways Flight 1549, dubbed a miracle, thanks to the impressive abilities and fortitude of Captain “Sully” Sullenberger.

Others went above and beyond. The entire flight crew, passengers, boat operators, first responders, and some who stepped in to help who never wanted or got credit.

Talking for the first time about what they did that day are two Con Edison employees: Tom Paratore and Scott Gross.

“When I drive across the George Washington Bridge I still look out the window and say ‘wow,'” Paratore said.

“I couldn’t believe what I was seeing,” Gross said.

Both are system specialists in charge of security cameras. They redirected one atop a building on West 58th Street– witnessing, recording and preserving all that happened for almost a full hour, all the while inside their offices miles from the Hudson.

“You see these people disembarking off an airport in the Hudson River,” Paratore told CBS2.

“The video starts at 3:25 and the first water taxi approached the aircraft at 3:29, but let me tell you those four minutes felt like forever,” Gross said.

Instantly aware this was crucial for investigators, they kept at it, but following the plane was challenging.

“It was in the current and the current was moving downstream pretty quickly,” Gross said.

As the movie opens nationwide, these Con Ed colleagues take pride in knowing they did something to help the investigation.

“With human intervention, we were able to capture something very unique,” Paratore said.

The video not only helped the National Transportation Safety Board, but also the filmmakers.

The man whose name is the title said Hollywood got it mostly right.

“It’s something that they made look real, sound real, and feel real to those of us involved in it,” Sullenberger said.

Some former NTSB investigators criticize the movie, saying it almost paints them as villains. However, seven years later people remember and celebrate all the heroes who gave this tale a happy ending for the ages.


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