Pasco teens want website removed after friend's suicide

12:56 AM, Dec 14, 2012   |    comments
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Spring Hill, FL-- It was standing room only as friends of Jessica Laney gathered for an emotional vigil at a Spring Hill church.

They want the website, ask.fm, removed from the Internet after Jessica committed suicide from cruel online comments from bullies.

Her young life was far too fragile and taken far too soon.

Jessica Laney was taunted relentlessly by savages - nameless, faceless bullies online. They ripped her to shreds and tossed out terrible insults.

What seems so odd, so shocking to those who knew her is that she would fall victim to the bullying in such a severe way.

Jessica was beautiful. She was smart. She was a soccer player with many friends. Nearly every friend she had, had this to say.

"She always made me smile. She always wanted to make others happy and lift their spirits. She thought of others before herself."

At a candlelight vigil Thursday night at the Calvary Church of the Nazarene in Spring Hill, Jessica's friends wept openly.

It was standing room only as the 16-year-old's buddies, teachers and even strangers gathered to remember her life.

Priscilla Marquez sobbed.

"Words can kill. It's not physical pain, but its emotional. It hurts. It really does."

For Jessica, the pain, the pressure and the persecution were just too much. Over the weekend, she killed herself in her Hudson home.

Over the weekend, the teen girl was hurting so badly, friends say, from family issues, that the cruel comments from the website, ask.fm, pushed her over the edge.

The bullying was too much to bear.

There were horrific statements aimed at Jessica, such as, "Just kill yourself. You're worthless. Can you just kill yourself already?"

It tore at Jessica's heart. She felt helpless and committed suicide.

"She thought it was a permanent solution to a temporary problem. She shouldn't have gone," said Angelina Vazquez.

Before her death, Jessica shared her pain on the ask.fm website, much to her demise. She said she felt "useless, broken, not wanted and alone."

If only, friends say, if only she had reached out, asked for help, asked for guidance.

"I wish she would have talked to me," said one friend. "Maybe I could have helped."

Youth group leader and parent, Summer Howlett, said, "Its sad. It really is when teens have to go through this. It's devastating."

Jessica's funeral is Saturday in Pasco county. Her friends continue to pass around a petition asking that the website be removed from the Internet

"Be good to one another, said the pastor. "If you see someone hurting, reach out to them. Lets stop the bullying."

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