The distraught family of an Australian girl who committed suicide after allegedly being bullied online has pleaded to parents to talk with their children so they can be spared the possibility of experiencing a similar tragedy.
The plea was made on the same day as the Everett family held a memorial service in the Northern Territory town of Katherine region for their 14-year-old daughter Amy, who is affectionately known as ‘Dolly.’
Dolly died on Jan. 3. allegedly killing herself after being bullied via social media.
“We don’t want another family to go through what we are going through and our vision is to establish a trust called Dolly’s Dream,” said Tick Everett the father, reported the ABC on Friday, Jan. 12.
— SBS News (@SBSNews) January 12, 2018
Speaking to the media, the Everetts repeated their hope of starting the “Dolly’s Dream” foundation to raise awareness of bullying, depression, anxiety and youth suicide.
“It won’t bring our Dolly back, but it may just prevent the loss of another young life,” said Tick.
“Please just talk to your children and anybody else and remember, speak even if your voice shakes. Stop bullying and be kind and do it for Dolly.”
Dolly Everett's broken father has launched a personal crusade to stop cyber-bullies from taking one more life. At a memorial for his daughter, he vowed to show every child the damage their words can leave behind. https://t.co/cfgLzL3olH Lifeline: 13 11 14 #DoItForDolly #7News pic.twitter.com/ygR5MPbAmq
— 7 News Adelaide (@7NewsAdelaide) January 12, 2018
Her father told the media his family would do their utmost to prevent other children feeling as Dolly had.
“With anything in life, somebody has to try to make a change,” Tick said.
“We realise there’s still going to be kids that slip through the cracks—that’s life—but mate, we’ve got to save as many as we can.”
The heartbroken family of #Dolly Everett spoke to media after her funeral, urging all parents to speak to their kids about bullying. They plan to set up a foundation in Dolly's memory. #DoItForDolly #speakevenifyourvoiceshakes pic.twitter.com/GeHU2v2IEC
— Stephanie Zillman (@Steph_Zillman) January 12, 2018
Those attending Dolly’s memorial service wore blue, Dolly’s favorite color, and were asked to donate funds to the foundation, instead of giving flowers.
Some people unable to attend also wore blue on the day as a sign of respect.
Wow, the tributes on https://t.co/hcLC200KRG and #doitfordolly blue is incredible – good for you RFTTE members! Our thoughts are with Dolly's family and friends today… @thelandnews @smh @TheNTNews @couriermail @OUTBACKmagazine @TODAYshow @ABCRural @Ruralweekly please RT pic.twitter.com/NM9yFDJyOW
— RFTTE (@rftte) January 11, 2018
As he spoke to the media, Tick was with Dolly’s mother, Kate, and sister Meg.
“As a family, we will remember Dolly as a kind, gentle and loving little girl who loved her animals and cared so deeply for other people less fortunate than her,” Tick said.
“She was loved by so many and made friends with everyone she came across,” he said.
“Dolly saw the good in this world and the good in everybody she met.”
It takes remarkable strength to focus on others at a time of such immense sadness. Please support the Everett family & #dollysdream if you can. #DoItForDolly #StopBullyingNow @TheTodayShow pic.twitter.com/YXQ0HcKmvx
— Sylvia Jeffreys (@SylviaJeffreys) January 11, 2018
Media coverage of her death has been both national and international, and her story has touched people beyond those who knew her.
Eight years ago, Dolly featured in a Christmas campaign for iconic Australian hat maker, Akubra, who released a statement on the teenager’s death that supported the hashtags #stopbullyingnow #doitfordolly #justbekind.
— Royal Flying Doctor (@RoyalFlyingDoc) January 11, 2018