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Another suicide: Houston teen, victim of anti-gay bullying, shoots himself

Monday, September 27, 2010
FAMILY PHOTO

Asher Brown

Another teenage victim of anti-gay bullying has committed suicide.

Asher Brown came home from school last Thursday while his parents were at work. He shot himself in the head after enduring what his mother and stepfather say was constant harassment from four other students at Hamilton Middle School in Houston.

He used his stepfather’s 9mm Beretta, stored on a closet shelf, to kill himself. He left no note.

“For some reason, he stood out and people were just cruel. Kids were cruel to my kid. He was very different. He’s not the type of kid that would try to wear the newest clothes or try to do the coolest thing. He was an individual,” says David Truong, Asher’s stepfather.

The 13-year-old’s parents said they had complained about the bullying to school officials during the past 18 months, but claimed their concerns fell on deaf ears.

David and Amy Truong said they made several visits to the school to complain about the harassment, and Amy Truong said she made numerous phone calls to the school that were never returned.

But school officials said Monday that they never received any complaints from Brown’s parents before the suicide about the way the boy was being treated at school. [Houston Chronicle]

That statement has infuriated the Truongs, who accused the school district of protecting the bullies and their parents.

“That’s absolutely inaccurate — it’s completely false,” Amy Truong said. “I did not hallucinate phone calls to counselors and assistant principals. We have no reason to make this up. … It’s like they’re calling us liars.”

The Truongs say Asher confided in them that he was gay on the morning of his suicide. The parents say the conversation went so well, they believe he went on to confess to children at his school.

Asher’s suicide is the third incident this month attributed to anti-gay bullying.

On September 9, 15-year-old Billy Lucas of Greensburg, IN, hanged himself at his grandmother’s home. Friends of Lucas said that he had been tormented for years based on his perceived sexual orientation.

And in California, 13-year-old gay teen Seth Walsh remains in critical condition and on life support after he attempted to hang himself last week in what friends and neighbors describe as another case of anti-gay bullying.

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5 more reader comments:

  1. When I hear about things like this all I can do is just hang my head and hope the families will be able to get through this. I hate how, when somebody is different, the teens of the modern culture think they have to act against them and make them feel unwanted. Even as a gay teen I can’t understand just how much torment he had to go through, I just wish that people could see people for who they really are rather than just as a quality in that person that immediately makes them feel a need to persecute someone for no real reason. To any who would condemn a gay, lesbian,, bisexual, transsexual, or just any person falling into a stereotype, they should first realize that they are the real people who should be condemned, not the loving people who simply want to be accepted for who they are.

    Posted on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 8:15pm
  2. Completely and utterly tragic. This is so bad! Some people need to be raised properly, so that they don't become broken robot hate-mongers. Scum of the earth! I HATE BULLIES!!

    Posted on Friday, November 19, 2010 at 12:47pm
  3. Yeah I know. I hate people because they really STUPID 3V3R!!!!!

    Posted on Tuesday, February 8, 2011 at 3:35pm
  4. Asher deserved to live a life free of bullying. He deserved to be who he was. It is utterly tragic that he never got to grow up and be a great man. He is in a better place though. I know he is. God is love and that is all that matters.

    Posted on Thursday, March 31, 2011 at 6:47pm
  5. Lets raise hell over this! Hold school strikes to get the system off its ass and really work to get hostile kids out of schools, or targeted kids to a better school, private or home. I had to get homeschooled due to the stupid punks messing with me and ‘teachers’ did little.

    Posted on Tuesday, July 12, 2011 at 5:49pm