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In Memoriam

In memory of September’s children — Asher Brown, one year later

Friday, September 23, 2011

On September 23, 2010, Asher Brown returned home from school 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.

Asher Orrin Michael Brown, March 1, 1997 – September 23, 2010

Asher’s death drew national attention as part of a series of incidents where students were bullied or harassed because they were gay, or perceived to be gay.

Days before Asher’s death, he was kicked down a flight of stairs, his books kicked and scattered across the ground, while other students watched. When Asher attempted to gather himself up, he was kicked down another flight of stairs.

In response, Asher shouted that if the bully didn’t apologize then he would kill himself.

Asher was made fun of because of his size, because he had a lisp, because he was a Buddhist and because ostensibly he was gay.

Asher’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.

On September 23, 2010, Asher became the fourth known teen suicide victim that month due to anti-gay bullying, and the world would learn of the horrific story that ended another young life.

Asher was 13 years old.

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21 more reader comments:

  1. And some of the politicians say bullying isn’t a cause for concern. I say bull. This is just so, horrible that I can’t believe school officials would ignore a child’s pleas for help from bullying. I just can’t believe it.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:21pm
  2. We won’t forget you Asher. Or the countless others who feel there is no hope for them.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:24pm
  3. :’(

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:28pm
  4. how many lifes dose it take to change something in the USA when we an can try to save other countrys but not try to save our own kids lives or realize that something needs to be done to stop anyone an everyone who has died by other ppl hands an this is no defferent !!! sometime it hard to say i live here, in this world we live in . it brakes my heart!!!

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:38pm
  5. the school officials and teachers who did nothing to stop this criminal harassment should be prosecuted and tossed in jail.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:38pm
  6. FB needs a dislike button :( I barely survived that kind of crap, and it breaks my heart that these kids don’t see any hope or help.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:39pm
  7. I spent a lot of years trying to die behind this kind of treatment. Grateful I’ve learned to be alive.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 9:48pm
  8. That poor little boy. To think if only someone would’ve stopped to help him up and collect this things, say “It’s okay” or if homophobic behavior was more frowned apon, none of this might have happened.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 10:05pm
  9. Another martyr for the cause. How many others? 30 more? Is 100 enough? How many lives does it take? If this is the only way people understand something has to be done, I might as well join the numbers to help the cause. He was only 13, its f.cking enough!!!

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 11:36pm
  10. They’d consider it a consern if they were straight children.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 11:45pm
  11. Bullying will not end with new laws or by placing blame on the schools it starts at home.

    Posted on Friday, September 23, 2011 at 11:49pm
  12. So sad i got to find sone way to help everyone GLBT with anything. Or just talking bout anything.

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 12:23am
  13. What a shame! Shame on the schools, shame on all those who stood by and did nothing! Shame on us all because we sit here and do nothing! Its time to start making some noise! Noise for everyone that is a victim of bullying.! When will we wake up? How many more people have to die because we don’t want to get involved???

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 1:59am
  14. … so sad … sad sad

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 3:12am
  15. Several things bother me to the point I can’t sleep some nights. We should not be losing children in suicides. We must attend to and prevent bullying in schools. We must stop letting public officials from preaching hate and fear. We must speak up when we witness hate in action. We must begin to punish those personally responsible for the death, its a crime to hurt someone so horribly. We must make all accountable for their part in the crime. Parents must stop teaching hate. Oh I am so angry and frustrated, we should not be losing children to suicide caused by hate and prejudice. And all this is so basic.

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 3:19am
  16. Love conquers hate, but it takes action. Peace.

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 6:35am
  17. Sad. Whoever did this to him will haunts em forever.

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 8:44am
  18. ~~~KARAMA~~~

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 9:25am
  19. What a waste of a young life!

    Posted on Saturday, September 24, 2011 at 10:28pm
  20. so sad :(

    Posted on Sunday, September 25, 2011 at 2:54pm
  21. no child/teen should be left w/ suicide as the only way out of of being bullied b/c the school systems don’t listen to them or the parents… there has to be a way to stop the suicides dead in their tracks perhaps w/ the help of Rise Against and their Make it stop(Septembers children) song?

    Posted on Monday, December 12, 2011 at 1:29pm