On August 7, sixteen-year-old McKenna Brown of Palm Harbor, Florida, sadly took her own life just days before starting her senior year.
The teen attended East Lake High School and loved spending time with family, practicing her faith, and playing hockey.
Tragically, though, McKenna was also a frequent victim of bullying.
And in the days following her passing, parents Cheryl and Hunter Brown began speaking out about the bullying that pushed their daughter to such a heartbreaking extreme.
“She was broken. She was hurt. She was alone. She felt like she did not belong, but she chose to suffer in silence because she never said, ‘I need help,'” Hunter said.
Countless community members also took to Facebook to share their condolences for the Brown family and their memories with McKenna in the newly-created In Loving Memory of McKenna Elizabeth Brown Facebook group.
According to Emma Stewart, the Senior Class President, McKenna’s high school’s administration has reportedly been acting like “nothing happened.” She detailed this and more in a statement entitled, “East Lake Faculty and Staff, Do Better.”
“Since freshman year, we never knew how quick our ‘last first day’ of school would come. Little did we all know that McKenna’s last first day would come way sooner,” Emma’s statement began, which was posted on Facebook by Cheryl Brown.
Facebook; pictured above is McKenna