The unfortunate and unexpected death of a child has left his family and town in a cloud of confusion.
A 13-year-old eighth-grader shot himself Thursday morning in the bathroom of Davidson Middle School while his friends were sitting in the classroom. According to the report, the suicide was not due to bullying. However, I remain skeptic. They say the police questioned family, friends and teachers who claimed that he had been a happy, kind-hearted boy. No one has caught anything unusual about him or suspected that he was struggling with anything.
In my opinion, the boy obvious hid his pain well and the people around him didn’t pay enough attention. If it wasn’t bullying at school, it could have been cyber bullying or someone bothering him on the street (the playground, the park, wherever he liked to hang out after school). Perhaps he was recently taken advantage off sexually and never told anyone. It’s also possible that he was dealing with the guilt of being a homosexual and took his life, believing that the people around him won’t accept this fact. These are wild speculations, but those instances could have taken place.
The fact that 300 people attended the vigil they set up for this boy proves yet that he made a terrible mistake. Of course it’s tragic when a child dies regardless, but this detail shows that there were better options for him, a future, people who were willing and able to reach out.
To answer a question my instructor asked us to think about, if I was a journalist who worked on this story, I would stay up-to-date on what actions the school would take next. As of right now, community members are debating whether they are going to put metal detectors inside the schools. On Monday, the students cannot bring backpacks and have to carry their books in their hands.
Another thing to report on is the mystery the boy left behind: WHY? WHAT HAPPENED? I would comb through his room, search for a journal, something in writing, bloody underwear, clues. Hell, take a look at his homework, especially his English homework. Sometimes you can tell something about a person’s feelings by looking at the style of writing or the type of language they choose to use. Ask neighbors, anyone who might have seen him walking home from school, talk to relatives. He was only 13, but if he did have a computer, I’d scan through that first; check his emails, his activities on Facebook and other social media sites, find out what he would look at on the Internet.
I believe the family and the police can find out what happened to this poor kid if they act fast.
300 attend vigil for student who killed self at Southgate school
From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130321/SCHOOLS/303210418#ixzz2OIAuGJk3
**This blog entry was written for ‘Writing for Mass Media,’ JRN202, at Central Michigan University.