This morning I read something which deeply saddened me. Bailey O'Neill was eleven years old and attended Darby Township School in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. Bailey had some difficulties with two boys bullying him in school. On January 10th of this year, the boys cornered him, one of those boys held Bailey, who was reportedly trying to walk away, and the other one punched Bailey in the face, breaking his nose, creating a concussion so severe that Bailey had repeated grand mal seizures. He was admitted to the hospital where there was no other alternative but to place him in a medically induced coma and manage the anticipated brain swelling. Sadly, there were brain injuries which could not be treated. Bailey was removed from life support and died on Saturday evening, just a few days after his 12th birthday.
Although the two boys involved in the bullying were suspended from school for two days, no criminal charges have been brought against one or both of them. I hope that is rectified in the weeks to come. I don't know that murder is the correct charge, but somewhere between felonious assault, negligent homicide, and manslaughter is the charge that will prevent those two boys from targeting others and continuing to be predators who ended the life of a child.
When I was a child, we were taught that the only acceptable reason to hit someone, was in self defense. We were also taught that sometimes fighting or shoving had unintended consequences. You could push someone and cause a head injury which was later fatal. Have parents stopped teaching this, or are the parents themselves too stupid to know this ?
We now live in a time where children are suspended for nibbling a raspberry pop tart into the very vague and approximate shape of a gun. Yet, no one noticed that Bailey O'Neill was being harassed by houligans who took his life. When I was a child, we were taught that sometimes a punch or a trip in the wrong place does cause death in another human being. We were also taught that the only acceptable reason to hit another, was in self defense, something which I actually did in school myself, sometimes when boys hit me. Of course now, many of the teachers are just sharp enough to report and suspend the child who is defending himself and miss entirely the event which precipitated it.
I am deeply saddened at the loss of Bailey, and I read today that his parents have removed his younger brother from the school due to fear of retribution and bullying. What a world. Their child was assaulted and died and they need to be fearful of sending their younger son to school.
Friends of his family are fundraising for funeral expenses:
The scary thing is that this is not as rare as you might believe. A family in Nebraska experienced almost the identical experience with a fourteen year old child two years ago, and it was not covered in the news. Families who choose to homeschool, should do so because they enjoy and seek the benefits of homeschooling, not because they fear sending their children to school
My own child Daniel, died at this age, from presumably a heart rhythm disturbance which was not foreseen. My heart breaks for Bailey's family, for a loss of a child which could have been prevented.