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Here is the Truth

San Jose, CA

#21 Sep 10, 2013
I am a Junior at Lincoln County High School, and I know the facts. Please let me first explain that I did not know Blake Dunlap, so these words are not out of anger, or mourning for his loss. I am acting as a third, unbiased party. Here is what REALLY happened... Students have gone to the principal for the past 2 years asking for a poster,plaque or SOMETHING for Blake. They were threatened with suspension each time. I witnessed it for myself many times in the office. They were told that the school would not "glamourize suicide". The senior class even offered to pay out of their own pockets for the memorial but were told no hat it would make suicide popular. Its not just about Blake, its about every other kid who passed away and were not treated the same as Andy, or Jesse. Brittany, Tylor, and the others ever got a poster...or a trophy case memorial. The protest in the cafeteria was calm. No one was yelling, cursing, fighting or anything. All they were asking as for them to be heard. By saying those kids deserved to be suspended is vey hard for me to swallow. You are saying they deserve to be punished for caring...for standing up for what they believe...for caring about a fellow student... for beng the kind of person you tell them to be. For being strong individuals. I do not blame Mr.Snyder or the teachers. It is the board forcing the principal and teachers hands in this. But I do fault the teachers and staff for not standing for whats right. Imagine what would have happened if Rosa Parks hadn't stood up for what she believed? Parents and teachers tell us every year to be the kind of person that stands up for what you believe is right...then you punish us. Every voice deserves to be heard...every fallen human..friend...family member...student deserves to be remembered. Like I said, was not his fiend. So if you want to know the truth of matter without the media, or the school board sensoring it, and without bias... here it is. Even as I type this, I still cannot digest the fact that something like memorializing a fallen friend and student is being argued about. Seems like common sense.
YourReaching

San Jose, CA

#22 Sep 10, 2013
Let this Drop wrote:
These kids are stirring up drama for the family of Blake. I wish they would have let them grieve without kicking a hornets nest. The people causing this drama are doing it for selfish reasons. This is disrespectful to take a young man's passing, and make it all about themselves. They were overheard saying they wanted to get in trouble. They thrive on drama. Other kids in the community are saying the only reason these students started this was to start drama and get attention. That's sad when most of the teenagers feel that the teens responsible have ulterior motives.
I talked to Blakes aunt. She looked at me and said "Thank you for what you all are trying to do for Blake." The sad thing is, it wouldnt have been some big contraversy if they would have given Blake a chair and not made a huge deal about it in the first place.
Mingo Mama

United States

#23 Sep 10, 2013
Here is the Truth wrote:
I am a Junior at Lincoln County High School, and I know the facts. Please let me first explain that I did not know Blake Dunlap, so these words are not out of anger, or mourning for his loss. I am acting as a third, unbiased party. Here is what REALLY happened... Students have gone to the principal for the past 2 years asking for a poster,plaque or SOMETHING for Blake. They were threatened with suspension each time. I witnessed it for myself many times in the office. They were told that the school would not "glamourize suicide". The senior class even offered to pay out of their own pockets for the memorial but were told no hat it would make suicide popular. Its not just about Blake, its about every other kid who passed away and were not treated the same as Andy, or Jesse. Brittany, Tylor, and the others ever got a poster...or a trophy case memorial. The protest in the cafeteria was calm. No one was yelling, cursing, fighting or anything. All they were asking as for them to be heard. By saying those kids deserved to be suspended is vey hard for me to swallow. You are saying they deserve to be punished for caring...for standing up for what they believe...for caring about a fellow student... for beng the kind of person you tell them to be. For being strong individuals. I do not blame Mr.Snyder or the teachers. It is the board forcing the principal and teachers hands in this. But I do fault the teachers and staff for not standing for whats right. Imagine what would have happened if Rosa Parks hadn't stood up for what she believed? Parents and teachers tell us every year to be the kind
of person that stands up for what you believe is right...then you punish us. Every voice deserves to be heard...every fallen human..friend...family member...student deserves to be remembered. Like I said, was not his fiend. So if you want to know the truth of matter without the media, or the school board sensoring it, and without bias... here it is. Even as I type this, I still cannot digest the fact that something like memorializing a fallen friend and student is being argued about. Seems like common sense.
Thank you for informing us as to what is really going on at LCHS and the issue of the memorial to Blake. I had been told that the main problem, was that he committed suicide and the school did not feel he deserved to have a memorial. I am so proud of these students for standing up for what is right and decent.
another grieving mom

Charleston, WV

#24 Sep 11, 2013
seekerofthetruth wrote:
it has came to the attention of my wife and i that a group of students at hamlin high school, were attempting to honor a student that had passed away,(the method is irrelevant), and they were met with a barrage of resistance. i am taking this matter personally, because on 15 dec 2012, we lost our 21 year old son to suicide. i am certain that the family of this young man is devastated enough, without having to endure this callous and ridiculous act by the principal of this establishment. if these students did refuse to comply with some orders given, that is not anarchy. they are children, their brains are not developed enough to decipher exactly what is happening. we as adults and professionals are trained to intervene, and if we are not my question is did the school board have counselors on hand for these youths? and i don't mean the school counselor! this was a human life, i don't care what kind of life he led, he was loved and is missed. i am sure that a simple ceremony for this young man will not harm this learning institution. there is a stigma attached to suicide, our sons passing was not even mentioned in his old high school news paper. but others that perished in car accidents were there. this is the time for these students to organize ( with the help of a leader ) and do not minimize the impact this has had on their lives. we miss our son every day, a scent can have an effect, i won't watch a race ( we watched them every weekend), i can't eat a bowl of potato soup,(i made it for us every weekend). i ask you jeff midkiff, help these students cope. try to empathize. parents of these children i charge you GET INVOLVED, HELP YOUR CHILDERN !!!!! they miss their friend, allow them to honor this young man. to Blakes family, my heart goes out to you, you are in my prayers. that is the only way i have made it through. Gods love is truly great. message me here if you wish to talk. i am calling this community to action. lets show our children how much we love them. God bless you.
I agree, kids need to have the ritual of a memorial, we all need to have our grief rituals. Loss of a friend impacts their life profoundly. All deaths should be acknowledged and given a special time. To ignore the passing of a life devalues it! Our children need to know the value of each life they encounter. Give them the message: YOU MEAN SOMETHING TO US?
grief

Elizabeth, WV

#25 Sep 12, 2013
I understand where the kids are coming from but there is a time to grieve and a time to remember. Now the family of the kid is going have to grieve all over again because of this. There was going to be a chair at graduation for him but no that wasn't enough. Let him rest in piece
seekerofthetruth

Greensburg, PA

#26 Sep 12, 2013
Grief, Blake's family hasn't stopped going through this, they still want questions answered. As the parent of a child who committed suicide, you never stop going through it. It is there every day. This school stated " to memorialize Blake, would glamorize suicide" really? I will tell you that feeling like you just want to give up, lay in bed all day, refuse to be around friends and family, you don't leave the house because in your heart you know a lot of people want to try and would like to help you, you don't care being affected by suicide takes everything out of you. You can smile at the good times, but that is short lived. It is always on your mind, you try to live.
Jill

Derry, PA

#27 Sep 12, 2013
seekerofthetruth wrote:
Grief, Blake's family hasn't stopped going through this, they still want questions answered. As the parent of a child who committed suicide, you never stop going through it. It is there every day. This school stated " to memorialize Blake, would glamorize suicide" really? I will tell you that feeling like you just want to give up, lay in bed all day, refuse to be around friends and family, you don't leave the house because in your heart you know a lot of people want to try and would like to help you, you don't care being affected by suicide takes everything out of you. You can smile at the good times, but that is short lived. It is always on your mind, you try to live.
Go to Ona WV topix,topix suicide
seekerofthetruth

Latrobe, PA

#28 Sep 12, 2013
Jill, thank you. I hope I got my post to them in time.
grief

Chapmanville, WV

#29 Sep 13, 2013
Excuse me I am not from Ona don't know why it says that but I am right here in west Hamlin and last time I checked that's in Lincoln County. Let the boy rest in peace for heavens sake
Local Citizen

Hamlin, WV

#30 Sep 13, 2013
grief wrote:
Excuse me I am not from Ona don't know why it says that but I am right here in west Hamlin and last time I checked that's in Lincoln County. Let the boy rest in peace for heavens sake
My wife and I spoke to Blake's parents. Both were at the protest on Thursday. They haven't STOPPED grieving. No parent really would. They 100% supported this protest. So, please quit saying that "We're making them go through this again" You're wrong.
Heartbroken Parent

Glasgow, WV

#31 Sep 13, 2013
All of this is painful to hear. I am a parent of two students at LCHS of which one was so tragically taken from me earlier this year. I will never stop grieving for my child and I do understand what the students are trying to do. I guess what I'm trying to say is, all of this is bringing up so many emotions for me it's almost unbearable. I hope that all is resolved soon for Blake so that he may rest in peace as well as my child, who was a friend of Blakes. We, my family and I, still have a long road to go before we will finally have justice for our child. My prayers are with all the parents who have lost children, for no one that has, it is an unspeakable torture to go through everyday. My prayers are with the students as well.
Thank you
peace in life and death

Saint Albans, WV

#32 Sep 14, 2013
I don't understand how this students life/death-(a child)-could be ignored -for any reason. I hear he was bullied at lchs...he took his own life....among other things..his memory should not be excluded for any reason. a simple thing that stands out to me, he was maybe a little odd, maybe bullied, took his own life....this is exactly the type of situation that should NOT be ignored- NOONE should be bullied or excluded from LIFE because they are different> and definetly should not be excluded from memoriam in the halls of a school he attended and friends who cared and miss him now. the bullying seems to be continig- EVEN AFTER HIS DEATH!!!! THAT IS THE SIMPLE MESSAGE I PLAINLY SEE IN THE WHOLE STORY PLAYING OUT. If my child was involved in this protest,i would be there to guide them to act accordingly and speak with/for them. to give justice to the facts. this is out of control in a certain aspect,yes,but as I said above,it seems he was 'different' in life and excluded and now in death. such a shame. rest in peace is what I pray for the child who is absent from what could have been a wonderful life, if not for ignorance and authority failing,>>and it is continuing. leave the memoriams that are present and add this child's ,let the students mourn as they have any other students. simple and fair and just simply the right thing to do.
Mingo Mama

United States

#33 Sep 14, 2013
Poor Blake was bullied in life and has been bullied in death. People need to know that his life had worth and value, regardless of how he died. Too many people spend time judging instead of loving. Since Blake can't speak for himself, his friends have to be his voice.
LC Student

Hamlin, WV

#34 Sep 14, 2013
Mingo Mama wrote:
Since there are people on this forum that knew Blake, what is the REAL reason, for not honoring him with a memorial? I have been told it was because his death was a suicide. I was also told that there was an issue about the fact that he was gay and his death was the result of bullying. Is that the reason that the school does not want a memorial to him?
Blake was definitely not gay & not bullied as far as I know. He was the type you didn't want to mess with, if someone tried to "bully" him I don't think it would've worked
Concerned

Stollings, WV

#35 Sep 15, 2013
From my attention to what I've seen and heard is this. The kids want a memorial for Blake just like the other kids. The school refuses, stating they won't allow it because they didn't want to make suicide seem like a way for some kids who contemplate suicide.
A lot of kids in school who are bullied and treated differently from other kids, feel unwanted, neglected or worthless.
I don't want to see this happen to our kids.
I think the school was wrong for the expulsion, suspensions, demotions, threats to the kids of not getting to march with the other in graduation, or not being allowed to go to prom.
The school was wrong for that.
These kids have a Constitutional Right to voice their thoughts just as the teachers did over their pay and benefits.
If we allow this to happen then we are telling our kids their rights mean nothing.
I will not allow that to happen. I will stand by them and the school system can come to terms and negotiate a proper memorial for all the kids.
The memorial was more for the kids living and honoring their friend.
seekerofthetruth

Saint Albans, WV

#36 Sep 15, 2013
grief, it seems like you have some issues with your own life. have not made a post that i or (from what i can tell), any one else considers to be a positive. i was at this protest and spoke at length with Blakes family. his grandfather cried with me and assured me that things will get easier to deal with, but you never get over an occurrence such as this. in our speaking i heard this very wise man state. " those who don't under stand this and the pain that it involves will never understand. i never want anyone to have to experience this, but if only they could for fifteen minutes feel what we feel. society would have a different out look." see today is the nine month mark of us loosing our son. we know what today is without even saying it. my wife is asleep, i am sitting here with an incredible head ache. i have learned that through speaking with others touched by suicide, our bond allows us to remember our loved ones and even share laughs. those not having been affected by this don't know how to react to us or how to even respond. it comes through sharing our pain that it is some what eased, because we have some one that we can lean on. i have no idea why you are so defensive about your location. i don't think any one on here cares, and you show your support by saying "that boy" well he has a name Blake Austin Dunlap. this post was not created to sling mud or pick a fight, to i will share something that my papaw taught me years ago. "IF YOU DON'T HAVE ANYTHING NICE TO SAY, DON'T SAY ANYTHING AT ALL". AND THIS TOO. "IT IS BETTER TO REMAIN SILENT AND BE THOUGHT A FOOL, THAN TO OPEN YOUR MOUTH, AND REMOVE ALL DOUBT". to all who showed up in support of Blake Austin Dunlap, his family, and to support those students, thank you. and students, those who that were there it was great to meet Blakes friends, and remember. YOU CAN NOT FIGHT AGAINST FACTS !!!!! God bless all of you.

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