Australian DJs break silence over UK royal prank call
Monday, December 10, 2012 - 01:51
Dec. 10 - Two Australian radio announcers who made a prank call to a British hospital treating Prince William's pregnant wife Kate speak of their distress at the apparent suicide of the nurse who took their call. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
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(ROUGH CUT ONLY - NO REPORTER NARRATION)
Two Australian radio announcers who made a prank call to a British hospital treating Prince William's pregnant wife Kate broke a three-day silence on Monday (December 10) to speak of their distress at the apparent suicide of the nurse who took their call.
Greig and fellow presenter and prank mastermind Christian have been in hiding since nurse Jacintha Saldanha's death and the subsequent social media outrage at their prank.
Greig told Australian television her first thought when told of Saldanha's death was for her family.
"Unfortunately I remember that moment very well, because I haven't stopped thinking about it since it happened," she said, amid tears and her voice quavering with emotion. "I remember my first question was 'was she a mother?'."
Saldanha, 46, was found dead in staff accommodation near London's King Edward VII hospital on Friday after putting the hoax call through to a colleague who unwittingly disclosed details of Kate's morning sickness to 2DayFM's presenters.
A recording of the call, broadcast repeatedly by the station, rapidly became an internet hit and was reprinted as a transcript in many newspapers. But news of Saldanha's death sparked the Internet firestorm, with vitriolic comments towards the DJs on Facebook and Twitter.
Christian said his only wish was that Saldanha's grief-stricken family received proper support.
"I hope that they get the love, the support, the care that they need, you know," said Christian, who like Greig struggled to talk about the tragedy.
Both Greig, 30, and Christian were relatively new to the station, with Greig joining in March and Christian having been in the job only a few days before the prank call after a career in regional radio.
Greig said she did not think their prank would work.
"We thought a hundred people before us would've tried it. We thought it was such a silly idea and the accents were terrible and not for a second did we expect to speak to Kate, let alone have a conversation with anyone at the hospital. We wanted to be hung up on," she said.
The 2Day parent company Southern Cross Austereo (SCA) has received more than 1,000 complaints from Australians over the actions of the popular presenters, who have both been taken off air during an broadcasting watchdog investigation.
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