Kehlani and more mourn 9-year-old who took his own life after coming out

A number of prominent LGBTQ celebrities are mourning the death of Jamel Myles

A number of prominent cultural figures are paying tribute to Jamel Myles, a 9-year-old boy who took his own life as a result of homophobic bullying by his classmates.

LGBTQ activists and celebrities such as Kehlani, Ellen Page, and Hayley Kiyoko have made public statements mourning his loss on Twitter.

Kiyoko said: “This BREAKS MY HEART. People need to understand the power of their words. Wow. I’m so sorry for him and his family.”

R&B singer Kehlani tweeted her own message, saying: “Jamel myles’ confidence, pride, and eagerness to share his new found freedom with his parents and then classmates at 9 years old is beautiful and hope that is the memory celebrated continuously. rest in peace little warrior. the lessons here are clear.”

Daniel Newman, an LGBTQ actor on The Walking Dead, among other shows, tweeted: “ just killing himself at 9 years old after being bullied for coming out is all the proof you need that our fight against prejudice is as important today as ever!”

Other prominent LGBTQ celebrities such as actors Ellen Page and Laverne Cox also shared messages. Page said that the news “broke my heart”, and said “this needs to change. I’m sad & angry but trying 2 keep my heart warm & open.”

Speaking to Denver TV station KDVR, Myles’ mother Leia Pierce said that her son had been scared of her response to him coming out:  “He was like, ‘Mom I’m gay.’ And I thought he was playing, so I looked back because I was driving, and he was all curled up, so scared. And I said, ‘I still love you.’”

She said that after coming out to his classmates, her son suffered immediate bullying. “Four days is all it took at school. I could just imagine what they said to him. My son told my oldest daughter the kids at school told him to kill himself. I’m just sad he didn’t come to me.”

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