WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) - Monday is World Bullying Prevention Day, and bullying was the topic for a national audience on The Anderson Cooper show. The show highlighted the extreme effects bullying can have on victims and their families. Jayme Rodemeyer's family appeared on the show along with News 4's George Richert.
Although it aired Monday, this was taped last Tuesday. The family found the strength to do this nine days after Jamey's suicide.
Jamey's sister, Alyssa, sung, "My baby brother's gone, society's to blame, and I need a million ways to deal with the pain."
In front of a studio audience in New York City, Anderson Cooper told the world about the Amherst boy who took his own life after years of bullying through the internet, at Heim Middle School, and at Williamsville North.
"At the funeral, perhaps the priest summed it up best when he said that, 'Imagine that, of all things, by the time we're 14, we are now expected to fully know our sexual orientation, verbalize it and defend it to anyone who gets in our faces. How demanding our world has become. How relentlessly impatient we are,'" said Cooper.
Cooper asked Jamey's parents, "Have you ever confronted any of the kids who bullied Jamey?" And Jamey's father, Tim, responded, "We didn't really know who they were until now." Jamey's mom, Tracy, added, "And we were leaving it up to the schools. We were trusting that the right things would happen."
Days after his death, bullies were heard at a homecoming event saying they were glad Jamey's dead.
"I wanted to go to everyone of their houses, pull those kids and make them go see my son in that open casket, not at his funeral, but in the open casket to see what they had done," said Tracy.
Williamsville Superintendent Scott Martzloff was in NYC for the taping and told Cooper that an investigation was underway into the bullying of Jamey.
"We're reviewing everything we do in our schools, how we deal with bullies, how we train our teachers, how we involve the community, the parents and so certainly we want to reflect on this and bring out change, not only in our school district, but across the country," said Martzloff.
Because 20 minutes of The Anderson Cooper Show never aired due to breaking news from CBS News, we are rebroadcasting the entire hour of the show Tuesday morning at 1 a.m. on CW23.
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