His friends say Ronin Shimizu was passionate about cheerleading.
But being the only male on the cheer squad at Folsom Middle School in folsom, California, led to ongoing bullying and being called gay.
This week, the 12 year old killed himself.
Shimizu’s parents had reported the bullying to school officials on multiple occasions and the pre-teen was being home schooled this year because of the abuse, according to Sacramento station KXTV.
‘So sad to know that people can hurt you that way,’ student Allie Flahive told the station.
Another student said: ‘I heard that people called him gay because he was a cheerleader.’
The school principal informed parents of the suicide via email which read in part: ‘ … While do not know all of the circumstances surrounding Ronin’s passing, we will continue our work to maintain a safe, caring and positive school environment free from bullying and harassment.’
The Folsom Cordova Unified School District said in a statement that it is ‘shocked and deeply saddened by this unspeakable tragedy.
‘Our hearts go out to Ronin’s family during this difficult time. Many students, teachers and staff who knew Ronin remember him as a positive and outgoing child, and our school communities are truly grieving this loss today.’