Girl who died by suicide lives on in anti-bullying efforts

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A 12-year-old Rockaway Township student who died by suicide after severe bullying is living on through her parents’ efforts to stop bullying in schools.

Seth and Dianne Grossman say that their lives were changed forever when their daughter Mallory Grossman died one year ago.

“Everything's changed. Everything. It changes your DNA, who you are,” Seth Grossman says.

Mallory took her own life after being bullied at her Rockaway Township school, according to her parents.

“My last text message to her was around 5:17 that said, ‘Hey, are you OK?’ and sadly, she wasn’t OK,” says Dianne Grossman.

In memory of their daughter, the Grossmans started a foundation called Mallory's Army to educate children and school personnel about bullying.

“I think that Mallory represents change. And that’s what I would like to see happen,” Dianne says.

The Grossmans say that they are hoping for a change in bullying laws. They say that since Mallory’s death they have learned that there has been an increase in suicide cases. It has become a growing national problem put into focus by the recent suicides of fashion designer Kate Spade and celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain.

“It’s an epidemic. And I think that our children are screaming to us, and society is screaming to us that it's time that we start solving some of these problems,” says Dianne.

The family remembered their daughter on the anniversary of her death by releasing 12 butterflies in their backyard – one for each year that she lived.

The Grossmans have also filed a lawsuit against the Rockaway Township School District, which they believe did not do enough to stop the bullying.

Suicide helplines

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