Ripley High School leaders react to disturbing trend - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Ripley High School leaders react to disturbing trend

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(WMC-TV) - Blue ribbons hang around Ripley High School, where friends and family say a 15-year-old was bullied so bad he tried to take his own life. He is still clinging to life at Le Bonheur Children's Hospital.

A suicide just days ago has parents and school leaders concerned about this disturbing trend, wondering what is happening in Ripley to make students think suicide is the only way out.

School officials say a plan was developed in an effort to keep something like this from happening again.

"I think we should all come together as a community to stop the things that are making these tragedies occur," said Brianna Hardee, friend of Keifer Greer, who was found dead in his home Monday.

The district attorney says the investigation into Greer's death likely will not be a criminal case.

"People in my class, they get bullied all the time and I started to take up for a student who's been bullied," said Hardee. "She tried to speak out to the class but they didn't take her seriously at all."

The blue ribbon anti-bullying campaign is evident in the small town as residents grieve. It started three weeks ago after 15-year-old Dillan Custer tried to end his life.

A blue ribbon anti-bullying campaign started three weeks ago after 15-year-old Ripley High student Dillan Custer tried to take his own life.

School officials say this trend is disturbing.

"Our hearts go out to the families," said Lauderdale County School Board member Austin Thompson, Jr. "It's just going through the whole community."

Thompson says additional counselors and guest speakers will be on hand at Ripley High School beginning next week to give students in crisis an anonymous place to vent their concerns.

"Just don't know what happened here. We're just concerned about our children and want to get them help," added Thompson.

Officials are still investigating whether or not bullying is the reason behind both of the incidents.

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