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December 4, 2011

10 Year-Old’s Death Stuns All

by The Centinal

By Roni Adar – News Editor

Bullying is the act of intentionally hurting someone, whether it be physically or emotionally. Bullying hurts people of all ages, shapes, and sizes. Almost everyone has experienced it at least once. However, for Ashlynn Conner, bullying cost her her life.

Ashlynn Conner was a classic 10-year-old midwestern gal. She was on her school honor roll, a cheerleader, and an aspiring veterinarian.

Ashlynn had been teased at her school for two years. Classmates made fun of her haircut; they would call her “pretty boy.” She decided to grow her hair back out but even then, the taunting would not stop.

On November 10, after school, Ashlynn had told her mother about the mean words her classmates had called her: “fat”, “ugly”, and “a slut.” Innocent Ashlynn told her mother that she did not even know what “a slut” was.

Stacy Conner, Ashlynn’s mother, believes that this may have been the problem. The following day, 10-year-old Ashlynn hung herself from a knitted scarf on a clothing rod.

Ashlynn was only a few months into the fifth grade when she ended her short life.

Stacy Conner recounted how she tried talking to the schools administration whenever Ashlynn would complain about kids picking on her. Conner says that before that, she would try and council Ashlynn herself, ” I would give (Ashlynn) advice and guidance as to how I thought she should be able to handle bullying,” said Conner on her appearance on TODAY. “she never talked about killing herself.”

Ashlynn’s aunt, Kim Wright, said that Ashlynn had talked (the day of her suicide) about how she was looking forward to celebrate Thanksgiving, and how she wondered if it would snow a lot this winter. Wright claims Ashlynn “wanted to live.”

On November 10, after hearing about the mean words that her daughter’s peers called Ashlynn, Stacy Conner had asked her if she had told an adult. She said that she went to three teachers that told her, ‘Ashlynn, you need to go sit down and stop tattling,’ ” Conner said.

Consequently Ashlynn asked if she could be home schooled and her mother said it was not possible.

That Friday night, Ashlynn was found dead by her older sister.

” This occurrence is extremely sad. There is always help and don’t be afraid to find it,” Centennial teacher, Mark Sikora, advises students. ” Once teachers confront the students involved, the bully recognizes that there is someone there to stop them, and the kid(s) being bullied see that there is somebody there to support them.”

Statistics reported by ABC News, claim that about 30 percent of students are either bullies or victims of bullying, and 160,000 kids stay home from school every day because of fear of bullying.

If you or someone you know is being bullied/bullying, inform a trusted adult as soon as possible. Bullying is a serious topic and it must be stopped. Help end bullying.

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