A young trans woman has killed herself after being attacked online.
Rachel Bryk, 23, jumped off the George Washington Bridge, the bridge between New York and New Jersey, on Thursday night (23 April)
An eyewitness is believed to have seen the young woman leave her purse on the bridge and jump off into the Hudson River.
Bryk’s body has still not been recovered. A funeral will be planned when her body is found.
Her shocked mother Lisa Bryk, from New Jersey, found out on Friday morning.
‘She was super smart, really good with computers,’ she told Gay Star News. ‘We’ll miss her.’
Bryk was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis at a young age and lived with chronic pain. This meant she was unable to get a job or keep to a regular schedule.
She found her life in anime, nerd culture and computing. She helped develop an emulator that allows you to play Gamecube and Wii games on your PC.
But because Bryk was talented, and hard-working, and open about being trans, it meant she left herself open to online attacks.
When she said on 4chan that she was considering killing herself, she did not receive support.
‘DO IT, if you’re such a weak willed thin skinned dipshit then fucking do it,’ one anonymous commenter told her.
Even in her death, some on 4chan have described it as a ‘victory’. On news of her death, some commented that she was the ‘whiniest fucking faggot’ and ‘any tranny death is good riddance’.
Such comments clearly left Bryk severely depressed, who would often call herself ‘worthless trash’ on her Ask.fm page. Her Twitter bio page read: ‘[Trigger Warning]: suicide on everything i say.’
At Friday midnight, this was posted on her Twitter.
The people Bryk worked with mourned her.
‘She will be missed greatly by everyone. We are stronger, better people thanks to knowing her,’ one said.
And another: ‘Rachel was more than just a great programmer. She was a great programmer who always managed to put a smile on my face. I don’t think that there ever will be anyone else quite like her. Rest in peace.’
When we asked Bryk’s mom how the family dealt with her daughter’s transition, she said: ‘It caused a lot of worry, because the world is not a kind place for people who are different.’
If you are considering suicide, please call the US National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on 1-800-273-8255. The LGBT National Helpline is on 888-843-4564, with the Youth line on 800-246-7743.