Champaign County father continues to fight 6 months after losing his daughter to suicide

Paul Thompson is continuing to fight for change after his daughter, Bethany, took her own life after being bullied. (WKEF/WRGT)

CHAMPAIGN COUNTY, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) – April 17, 2017, marks six months since 11-year-old Bethany Thompson took her own life after being bullied for years.

The cancer survivor was bullied for her crooked smile, and now her father is trying to make sure no other child feels the way Bethany did.

FOX 45 been following her story since the beginning.

Just this past weekend, her father Paul Thompson was in Missouri for a softball tournament spreading awareness about bullying.

He’s looking to make changes nationally.

"Today is six months since Bethany was bullied and unfortunately took her own life,” Thompson said.

Wednesday was an emotional day for him.

"You can go forward or you can go backward,” he said. “I gotta go forward.”

Bethany was a cancer survivor at age 3.

"I think being a cancer survivor in and of itself is a big deal as it is already as a toddler,” he said.

Thompson said his daughter was bullied for her crooked smile; the smile she got after her life-saving surgery.

"And then be 11 years old and feel that the only way out is to take your own life is, is,” he said, “I can't explain it."

So Thompson has been working on what he's calling bully boxes.

"Students can make complaints,” he said, “or say somebody is bullying them or being bullied."

He wants them to be posted by a school counselors office.

"Things to help just one person,” Thompson said. “And it doesn't necessarily have to be in Champaign County or in Ohio, just anywhere. Because every life matters."

Besides bully boxes, he's working on a petition to make bullying a federal crime.

"We're gonna get 100,000 signatures and we're going to Washington," he said, "It's not just for Bethany. It's for every other kid it there."

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