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Nicola Raphael
Born Nicola Ann Raphael
September 10, 1985(1985-09-10)
Glasgow, Scotland, U.K.
Died June 24, 2001(2001-06-24) (aged 15)
Stobhill Hospital, Glasgow, Scotland, U.K.
Cause of death Suicide by overdose
Resting place Auld Aisle Cemetery Kirkintilloch Glasgow, Scotland, U.K.
Nationality Scottish
Ethnicity White
Occupation Student
Parents David Raphael
Rona Raphael

A case which attracted a lot of media attention from 2001 onwards was the suicide of Nicola Raphael a 15 year old who allegedly endured bullying because she dressed in a Goth style. Her suicide and allegations of bullying at her school Lenzie Academy led to wide coverage in the local and national press. Later commntary has said that"in many ways the suicide could be read as a grim warning of the strength of hatred that was to lead to Sophie Lancaster’s death". [1]

The case is also notable in that was featured some early coverage in the media of the issue of bullying by text message/mobile phones. [2]

The case was also one of those cited by the daily record in the setting up of their "Save our Kids Campaign" as seen here [3][4][5]

The Issue was also raised in the Scottish Parliament by Lyndsay McIntosh MSP : "The minister mentioned children in his opening remarks, so I will channel his thoughts towards youngsters' being bullied. We should think about 16-year-old Nicola Raphael or 12-year-old Emma, who attended Broughton High School, both of whom committed suicide as a result of being bullied at school. I can think of nothing more crucial to the quality of life of our youngsters than that."[6]

BackgroundEdit

Bullying incidents and suicideEdit

Information requested for later legal action found that the bullying allegations went back over several years: "Internal papers just released reveal that 15-year-old Nicola Raphael, who took an overdose in 2001 after being tormented over her gothic appearance, had complained to teachers about bullying long before she died ... the document shows staff clearly knew the youngster, whose suicide shocked the nation, had felt under threat of physical attack but did not inform her parents."[7]

ReactionEdit

Shortly after her death at a concert Nicola was due to have attended Marilyn Manson was seen comforting Nicola's mother [8]: "Performing in Glasgow last weekend, Manson dedicated the song Fight On to Nicola Raphael, 15, who overdosed on painkillers two months ago and was buried along with her ticket to the Manson show. After the concert, Manson met with the girl's mother. He was very caring and considerate, Rona Raphael told Scotland's Daily Record newspaper. I was so touched that this megastar took time out to meet me. Despite all the controversy about him and his shows, he just seemed like a normal man to me...."

In 2003 the story was also featured on Tonight with Trevor McDonald: GIRLS AFRAID "A report on the dramatic increase in bullying by girls. "

Organ DonationEdit

There is bright spot in the tragedy of Nicola’s death in that her organs later helped save lives Her family also were involved in NHS organ donation campaigns [9] and were later featured in a 2005 BBC TV documentary on organ donation entitled "Life on the List" where they met a young boy named Jack who was one of the recipients.[10]

Despite Nicola having carried a donor card for several years hospital staff did not ask the family about donation. Instead Nicola's mother had to approach staff herself to make sure her daughters wishes were carried out.

See also Edit

LinksEdit

(Kirkintilloch Herald Article)

(Daily Record Article)

(Herald Scotland Article)

(Herald Scotland Article)

(Herald Scotland Article)

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