Texas boy hangs himself days before birthday after struggling with lockdown distress, dad puts up tragic video
Brad Hunstable his son 'wasn't depressed' or 'someone who moped around' before the crisis
A 12-year-old ended his life days before his 13th birthday as he struggled with Covid-19 lockdown, his grieving father said. Hayden Hunstable’s father, Brad, a resident of Aledo, Texas, said the boy “wasn't depressed" or "someone who moped around" before the crisis. However, he added that he suffered during the ongoing Covid-19 shutdown.
Brad made a YouTube video in which he talks about his irreplaceable loss and how the novel coronavirus killed his son, but “not in the way you think”. Refuting people's claims that the lockdown was "just like summer" for children, who were stuck at home and isolated from their friends and peers, Hunstable said: “It's not like summer. We have a social and emotional bubble that's about to burst. I hope nobody ever feels this way, to see what I saw, and to feel this pain."
You can watch the heartbreaking video here.
Hayden reportedly killed himself on April 17, four days before his 13th birthday. His eight-year-old sister found him hanging in his bedroom. The grieving father of the young boy said he believed Hayden would not have taken the extreme step if it was not for the virus and its consequences. Brad also recalled how his son struggled without the routine of school and seeing his friends. “I believe my son would be alive today if he had been at school. And that's not to discount massive suffering around the world because of this virus.
“I don't want my son and his memory to be the last mistake he ever made. Nobody wants that,” he said, adding he wanted people to remember Hayden for his "smile, heart, dedication, and tenacity."
In addition to this, Hunstable has also started a new Facebook page and launched a website, both named Hayden’s Corner, to raise money for a mental health campaign. According to the page, its aim is to address two critical issues, first, “Begin the journey to fund and provide K-12 Schools, students, parents, and school systems learning content focused on the social and emotional development of our youth,” and second, "Create a PSA (Public Service Announcement) campaign aimed at educated both kids and parents on responsible gaming and oversight from the parents and the gaming corporations.”
In a similar incident, a high performing student killed himself as he feared for his future amid the coronavirus lockdown. Matthew Mackell, 17, was found on May 7 in the picturesque Dunorlan Park in Tunbridge Wells, Kent, and he was pronounced dead after police and paramedics attended to him.
A notebook of the youngster found by his family after his death revealed that he was worried about how lockdown would affect his school results. Matthew’s family has now urged students to speak out about the pressures of education during the time of crisis. “He was writing about his feelings and that he wasn't happy. It was quite dark. It wasn't nice to read. But I wasn't aware of any problems at all. If anything I thought he was doing more than well with it.
“No one really thought that Matt was worried about that. Matt was stupidly successful at school. I was speaking to a couple of his friends and they were saying he was 100 percent the brightest one out of the whole year,” his brother Chris Mackell said.