The family of a Bedford, Pennsylvania, girl has been brutally honest about the bullying that led to the suicide of 15-year-old Sadie Riggs.
Sadie Riggs lived all of her short life in Bedford, a small rural town of about 3,000 people about 100 miles outside of Pittsburgh, PA. She would have turned 16 in December, but instead she hung herself this week. Sarah Smith, Sadie’s aunt, told WPXI that her niece killed herself because of relentless bullying at school and on social media.
“On her cellphone, SnapChat, Kik, and Instagram were her big things getting bullied on.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control, suicide is the second leading cause of death among youth between the ages of 10 – 24. The organization National Voices for Equality, Education and Enlightenment reports that suicide rates among 10 -14-year-olds have grown more than 50 percent over the last 30 years and that 90% of 4-8 grade students report having been bullied.
The family bravely decided to share the truth behind Sadie’s suicide. Sadie’s obituary on the Geisel Funeral Homes and Crematory website begins with the tragic statement: “Miss Sadie L. Riggs, 15, of Bedford, took her own life on Monday, June 19, 2017.”
The notice continues:
“In an effort to debunk the rumors about Sadie’s death we would like to share this information. Yes, Sadie took her own life, she hung herself. It is hard to fathom that someone so young could be so troubled. Sadie was seeking help, she was in counseling and taking medication, but it was all too much for such a young soul to live with..”
It goes on to address the bullies directly:
“For the bullies involved, please know you were effective in making her feel worthless. That is all between you and God now, but please know that it is not to late to change your ways…To all the bullies out there, I just want you to know that as much as we despise your actions never, ever do we wish for you to feel the paralyzing pain that engulfs our bodies, a pain so severe that it makes the simple act of breathing difficult or the guilt that leaves us wondering what we could have done differently-or that struggle to remember the last words we spoke…”
In lieu of flowers the family asks that we “be kind to one another.”
Sadie L Riggs will be laid to rest on Saturday.
Feature photo: Facebook