On Wednesday the tragic funeral of Ashlynn Conners took place in Illinois. The 10-year-old girl was found dead in a closet by her elder sister last Friday.
Her family believes it was bullying by peers in her school and in the small town of Ridge Farm that drove her to commit suicide. Ashlynn’s body has been examined by the Vermilion County Coroner Peggy Johnson and an investigation by the Sheriff’s department into her suicide is ongoing.
Ashlynn’s grandmother, Lory Hackney, told the Chicago Tribune that she was being called “a boy” and fat or ugly.
She said “When she started cheering for youth football, we'd gotten her hair cut in a bob…The kids started making fun of her then. They started calling her a boy.''
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Her grandmother said the taunting had been going on for some time.
On Thursday Ashlynn had asked her mom if she could be home schooled because she was being picked on at school. She assured her daughter they would speak to the school’s principle this week.
On Friday she heard her daughter telling a friend about the bullying on the phone. Just 30 minutes later Ashlynn’s 14-year-old sister found her dead in a closet.
Hackney, a retired nurse, attempted to give her granddaughter CPR. She said “I don't know what was so bad she couldn't wait."
Sadly suicide in young children appears to be uncommon it happens hundreds of times a year. The US Center for Disease Control states that more than 200 children, between the ages of 10 and 14 killed themselves between 1999 and 2005.