13-year-old Daniel Fitzpatrick took his young life recently, after being relentlessly bullied by his schoolmates about his "weight, grades, and his innocent heart." His distraught father says that the school played as big a role in his son's death as any bullies due to the negligent way in which they turned a blind eye to the problem.
In what must have been an incredibly difficult decision, Daniel's father shared his son's suicide note in order to bring his son's situation to light. The full transcript is below.
"At first it was good. Lots of friends, good grades, and a great life but I moved and went back and it was different," Daniel wrote.
"My old friends changed, they didn't talk to me, they didn't even like me."
"My 'friend,' he failed me and I failed too. But A took it out on me. He bullied me along with J, M, JO, and JA. They did it constantly until I went into a fight with A. Everyone stopped except JO, he was angry.
"I ended up getting x-rays for my pinkie from JO. I ended up fighting Jo and got a fractured pinkie. He got into a lot of trouble as for me, no trouble at all."
"But they continued, I gave up, the teachers either they didn't do anything! Not get them in trouble even though they did trouble, I got in trouble instead because A was mad at me because he believed I failed him."
"I told all the teachers nothing except one… she was the nicest teacher ever she understood and did something but it didn't last long."
"I wanted to get out, I begged and I pleaded. Eventually I did, I failed but I didn't care. I was out that's all I wanted."
"My son's story is now out there for the world to see and for the world to know the pain that he went through. I miss my son very much."
"No parent should have to bury their child. No child should have to go through what my son went through."
"To the parents of the boys that tormented my son, all I have to say is I hope you never have to feel what my family is going through right now. You get to hold your children every night and day for the rest of your lives and their natural lives. I don't get that anymore. Your little monsters took that from me and my wife."
A spokesperson for the Brooklyn/Queens school district issued the following statement:
"In light of this tragedy we are reexamining all bullying prevention policies and training. The principal, teachers, and staff of Holy Angels Catholic Academy are heartbroken over the loss of Danny Fitzpatrick. We take the issue of bullying very seriously and address every incident that is brought to our attention."