A 14-year-old girl from a well-known Northern Territory cattle family who took her own life last week has been remembered by her family as a “kind, caring and beautiful soul” as they launched a social media campaign to raise awareness of bullying and harassment.
The family of Amy “Dolly” Everett, who was once the face of iconic Australian hat company Akubra, said they wanted to spare other families the grief they were experiencing at her loss, which they said came after she was tormented by cyber bullies.
In a statement provided to the ABC on Wednesday, parents Tick and Kate Everett and sister Meg thanked the community for the “overwhelming response we have received since our world came crashing down around us when our beautiful Dolly left our family”.
They asked for time to celebrate Dolly’s life.
“This is all we are capable of at the moment and ask for your respect to give us time to grieve,” the family said.
“Our daughter Dolly was the kindest, caring, beautiful soul, and she was always caring for animals, small children, other children at boarding school who were less fortunate than herself.
“Out of all the sadness that the loss of our daughter has brought to our lives, we feel that through losing Dolly we would like to help other families by making an awareness of bullying and harassment that some people are sadly subject to.”
They said their goal was to establish a trust called “Dolly’s Dream” to raise awareness of bullying, anxiety, depression, and youth suicide, and on social media had been using the hashtags #stopbullyingnow and #doitforDolly.
The profile picture Dolly’s family have used to support the campaign has been shared more than 1,000 times on Facebook.
“Before Dolly died, she completed a drawing and wrote the words ‘Stand up, speak even if your voice shakes’,” her family said.
“This powerful message tells the dark, scary place our beautiful angel had travelled to.
“We are not concerned with the who or the why of who pushed our daughter to this point, we just want to save another family going through the sadness and tragedy that our family is experiencing.”
On Facebook, Tick Everett said Dolly’s life “will not be wasted” if the family could stop the suffering of others.
– Kirsty O’Brien
Photo source – Akubra