Southgate school bans apparel memorializing suicide victim - FOX 29 News Philadelphia | WTXF-TV

Southgate school bans apparel memorializing suicide victim

Posted: Updated:
As of Friday, students at Southgate's Davidson Middle School will not be allowed to wear memorial braclets for Tyler Nichols. As of Friday, students at Southgate's Davidson Middle School will not be allowed to wear memorial braclets for Tyler Nichols.
SOUTHGATE, Mich. (WJBK) -

After 13-year-old Tyler Nichols took his life inside his school, classmates made clothing and jewelry to honor his memory.  Now administrators at Southgate's Davidson Middle School say those items are no longer allowed.

"She just was bawling and bawling, and I'm like I will be there as soon as I can," said Gena Pizo.

She will never forget the day her daughter called saying her friend and classmate since kindergarten committed suicide inside a school bathroom.

There have been plenty of tearful days for the kids, but Pizo said students have made clothing and bracelets saying things such as "rest in peace Tyler" or "fly high Ty" with the suicide awareness symbol, and that seems to help.

"It was very traumatic for them, especially when it happens in school," Pizo said.  "They wear it because they feel that's how they're going to recognize their friend, remember him."

Since the suicide to deal with their pain, some students have been wearing their sweatshirts, bracelets and T-shirts in memory of Tyler, but parents received an email Wednesday night that said as of Friday, April 12, students will no longer be able to wear that clothing and then tried to explain the reasons why.

"They don't want to glorify suicide, and I don't think the kids are trying to glorify it.  I think they just want to remember their friend.  It's only been two and a half weeks," Pizo said.

According to the email, the decision was based on research from the Association of Suicidology and National Association of School Psychologists that says continued visual reminders can lead to decreases in cognitive function and the inability to focus and retain and process information, among other things, and memorial clothing may be glamorizing the death.

"We're going by what is being recommended to us, and we've looked at things, too, and there's not a right answer in all this stuff," said Southgate Schools Superintendent Bill Grusecki.  "So we're looking at getting back to as normal as possible in the most timely fashion we can, and we feel we're making the right decision.  We've even touched base with Tyler's parents, and they believe this is the right thing for us to do, too."

He explained if students continue to wear the clothing, they won't be punished, but they will have to speak with counselors to help them work through their grief.

Pizo speaking on behalf of a lot of concerned parents said the school should anticipate just that because their kids don't plan to stop wearing the clothes that are helping them cope with their loss.

"I just want the kids to be able to grieve for their friend," she said.

  • Taryn AsherTaryn AsherMore>>

  • Family of man who died at local concert defending suspect

    Family of man who died at local concert defending suspect

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 8:00 AM EDT2014-08-20 12:00:39 GMT
    The son of a 55-year-old Westland man who died after an alleged assault at a concert said the 15-year-old teen being investigated is not to blame.
    The son of a 55-year-old Westland man who died after an alleged assault at a concert said the 15-year-old teen being investigated is not to blame.
  • Brazen gas station bandit caught on camera

    Brazen gas station bandit caught on camera

    Monday, August 18 2014 11:50 PM EDT2014-08-19 03:50:06 GMT
    St. Clair Shores are asking for your help identifying a brazen armed robber who was caught on tape.
    St. Clair Shores are asking for your help identifying a brazen armed robber who was caught on tape.
  • Ficano talks about primary loss and his future

    Ficano talks about primary loss and his future

    Wednesday, August 6 2014 8:37 PM EDT2014-08-07 00:37:06 GMT
    The primary results are in and Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano will soon be out. He spoke to Fox 2's Taryn Asher about his primary loss and the future.
    The primary results are in and Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano will soon be out. He spoke to Fox 2's Taryn Asher about his primary loss and the future.

Suicide Prevention Help

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
(Free hot line operated 24 hours a day for those in suicidal crisis or emotional distress)
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org


Suicide Prevention Resource Center
www.sprc.org

Common Ground
Crisis Line: 800-231-1127
www.commongroundhelps.org

American Association of Suicidology
www.suicidology.org

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
www.afsp.org
 
Powered by WorldNow

WTXF-TV
330 Market Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106-2796

Phone: (215) 925-2929
Fax: (215) 982-5494

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices