When the call first came in to Denver’s KUSA-TV about Falcon Heene, "the boy in the balloon," assignment manager Jim Pedersen and news director Patti Dennis, were both skeptical, reports Denver Westword, the Denver news blog.
Dennis questioned Richard Heene extensively — why wasn’t Falcon in school, why hadn’t the police been contacted — before jumping on the story and sending a helicopter out to track the balloon.
Dennis was surprised at how interest in the incident grew exponentially, but when she was deluged with requests for information from as far away as Australia and Sweden, she knew KUSA had the biggest story in the station’s history.
"I’ve been doing this for 31 years and this is at the top of the unusual scale. It’s the new number one," she said.
— Allison Waldman