As a bullied boy dies in Pennsylvania, the issue of general school safety is again being discussed — and the parents of 12-year-old Bailey O’Neill make arrangements to bury a child who passed on just one day after his birthday Saturday.
The bullied boy was attacked in school by classmates early in February, and it seems the extent of his injuries was not immediately apparent. While Bailey sustained a broken nose in the incident, he was treated and released to his parents — who soon observed their son was not behaving normally.
Outrage as the bullied boy dies has reached high levels on Facebook, where users have gathered to express not only support for the family of Bailey O’Neill, but to express frustration that as of yet, no criminal charges have been filed in the deadly playground assault.
As flags at the Darby Township School flew at half mast for the boy, NBC Philadelphia explains that while O’Neill initially appeared to recover shortly after the attack, the complications from injuries sustained led to his death Sunday after his parents made the difficult decision to discontinue life support:
“O’Neill died at the hospital Sunday morning after being taken off life support. O’Neill, who turned 12 the day before he died, had been in a medically-induced coma after suffering several seizures … Those seizures started the day after O’Neill was jumped by two classmates during recess, according to O’Neill’s family. He suffered a concussion as well as a broken nose in the fight. After the seizures began, doctors put the boy in a medically-induced coma.”
On Facebook, the family member in charge of the page dedicated to O’Neill both before and after the bullied boy’s death updated this morning to indicate that arrangements for his funeral were being made — and added:
“As I sit in the backseat of baileys pop pops car as we get to the cemetery and pick out a plot and now head to the funeral home to discuss the process of the funeral I want to ask for everyone’s help to pray and support baileys family! As much as I hate to ask I would like everyone to share the donation link so we can help ease the financial part of this all. Thank you all again for your prayers and support.”
A second update adds:
“Thank you everyone for your prayers and generosity!! You have no idea how much the family appreciates this!! No mother should go through what Jina Risoldi has been through. I hope you continue to pray for the family. Thank you”
A rep for the district indicated that counselors were on hand after the bullied boy’s death to speak to children, but no confirmation of further disciplinary action was made.
Anyone wishing to send condolences or donate to bullying victim Bailey O’Neill and his grieving parents can contact the family on the Facebook page “Building Hope for Bailey.”