Sergio Urrego, 16, took his own life last month after Catholic school administrators harassed the teenager by making his relationship with another young man public and accused him of sexual harassment.
Sergio’s mother, Alba Reyes, has just recently opened up to the media about her son’s suicide in order to clear his name.
Reyes said her nightmare began in May when a teacher at Gimnasio Castillo Campestre school in the Colombian capital Bogotá, saw a photo of Sergio kissing his boyfriend of a month and a half on his cellphone. After confiscating the phone, both boys were sent to the school psychologist.
The boyfriend was then forced by the school to tell his parents about his sexuality and was quickly withdrawn from the school.
The school refused to release Urrego’s academic results and blocked his transfer to another school. He was continuously suspended from classes, send on multiple visits to the psychologist and accused of sexual harassment.
Unable to cope with the betrayal and harassment at the hands of school administrators, Urrego sent his friends goodbye messages and then jumped from the Titán Plaza shopping center on the morning of August 4. He passed away three hours later at a local hospital.
‘My sexuality is not my sin, it’s my own paradise,’ Urrego wrote on his Facebook page before taking his life.
He also shared the lyrics from Pink Floyd’s “The Wall” on Facebook the day of his suicide:
I’m leaving you today
Goodbye all you people
There’s nothing you can say
To make me change
Of the 42 students who were in the 11th grade with Sergio, 40 attended his funeral on August 8.
Shortly after his funeral, his classmates were called into a meeting with the principal who described the deceased teen as an ‘anarchist,’ ‘atheist,’ and ‘homosexual,’ never once showing any sadness or sense of loss for the former student. The school psychologist also told the students to be ‘discreet’ about the suicide, according to a student who wished to remain anonymous.
The school also informed the students who attended the funeral without prior permission, they would have to make up the day they missed the following Saturday.
Sergio’s father insists his son’s suicide was a cry of protest against the school who bullied and harassed their teen son.
In one of the three letters Sergio left behind, one was addressed to his grandmother. He wrote that he would miss her hands, the way that she would look, her smile: “I never wished to die before my grandmother, but I can’t not continue on. In reality, I ask your forgiveness for this.”
Sergio had plans to study English in Australia and to become an environmental engineer.
R.I.P. Sergio Urrego.Advocate via ElEspectador]