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’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.