UPDATE: Large turnout at Minford BOE meeting in light of teen's - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

UPDATE: Large turnout at Minford BOE meeting in light of teen's suicide

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Jordan Fyffe, friend of Jonathan Scaff, recalled harsh language toward Jonathan on the day before the suicide: "I turned to [Jonathan] Scaff, and asked 'Did those guys just tell you to go kill yourself?' He looked at me and teared up." Jordan Fyffe, friend of Jonathan Scaff, recalled harsh language toward Jonathan on the day before the suicide: "I turned to [Jonathan] Scaff, and asked 'Did those guys just tell you to go kill yourself?' He looked at me and teared up."
Randy and Trisha Scaff stand outside a relative's home with a picture of Jonathan. The family plans to move out of the home where Jonathan took his own life. Randy and Trisha Scaff stand outside a relative's home with a picture of Jonathan. The family plans to move out of the home where Jonathan took his own life.
UPDATE:

Family and friends showed up Monday evening at the Minford High School Media Center for the Board of Education meeting, the first one since a tragedy that put the issue of bullying at the top of many minds in the community.

Family of Jonathan Scaff, 13, who took his own life on Wednesday, July 16, are expected to address the board about bullying policy at Minford Schools.

13 News has received dozens of emails and Facebook comments about the issue of bullying since our first story about Jonathan last weekend.

"This bullying has got to stop before this happens to another family," says Trisha Scaff, Jonathan's mother, who plans to attend the meeting to "take a stand for Jonathan."

Friends tell us Jonathan had endured bullying all the way up until the day before he died when Jonathan was harassed and taunted at football practice.

"I looked over at him. He looked at me, and he just said, 'I'll be alright,'" says Jordan Fyffe, lifelong friend and teammate of Jonathan who has witnessed several incidents involving Jonathan.

Family and friends say neither they, nor Jonathan, could get the bullying to stop, even when they contacted school administrators about it.

13 News has left several messages for the principal of Minford Middle School.

Our messages have not been returned.

"They need to take it more seriously. They need to stop acting like the kid who's coming to them is the problem. It's the bullies that are the problem," says Jonathan's cousin, Amanda Schultz. "The joking with each other, and the rough-housing with each other is totally fine. But actually degrading them until they cry, or telling them to go kill themselves, -- that's uncalled for. That's unacceptable."

The meeting, rescheduled as to not conflict with last week's viewing for Jonathan Scaff, is set for Monday, July 28, at 6 p.m.


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ORIGINAL STORY:

Trisha Scaff tells 13 News about the last interaction she had with her son, Jonathan, just as she arrived home from her first day at her new job on Wednesday.

"I got home from work that morning, and he rushed out to the van, and even opened up the van door for me. He said 'Hey Mom. How was your first day at work?' Not an hour later is when we found him."

Jonathan, 13, a lover of football, Nascar, church, and family was found hanging in his closet by his older sister at his home on Hutchinson Hollow Road in Scioto County.

His parents say they plan on moving to another home.

We met with them at the home of Trisha's parents.

At 89 pounds, Jonathan was smaller than most of his classmates and teammates.

His parents say he endured bullying for much of his life, and it had been getting worse.

"People made fun of him for being so little all through school," says Trisha. "But last year is when it starting going pretty far."

They also tell us they had talked to his principal about it, but the bullying continued.

"They just need to do a better job when a child comes to them and tells them stuff like that," says Jonathan's father, Randy, who stresses that bullying is going on everywhere despite some schools' attempts to educate students through assemblies about bullying. "It just isn't because he was bullied at one school. It's going on at other places too. It needs to stop."

Jonathan's lifelong friend and teammate on the Minford Middle School football team says on the day before the suicide, there was an incident at football practice.

"When I heard, 'Go kill yourself,' I turned to Scaff, and asked 'Did those guys just tell you to go kill yourself?' He looked at me and teared up, because he knew what was happening," recalls Jordan Fyffe, who says he has dealt with bullying himself. "I asked 'Are you alright?' He said 'yes. I'm tough. I'll get through this.' I said, 'Yes, you are.'"

The Scioto County Sheriff's Office is investigating.

Messages to a football coach and the principal have not been returned.

The Scaffs say they did this interview, because they want parents, teachers, and the children themselves to take bullying seriously.

"People have to try to get help," says Trisha. "This bullying has got to stop before this happens to another family."

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