Walk creates bullying awareness

The memory of a young man will weigh heavy on family as they walk in support of anti-bullying.

The memory of a young man will weigh heavy on the hearts of family and friends as they walk in support of anti-bullying Saturday.

Cross Jones was just 13 years old, and had just started school at Vernon Secondary when he took his own life on Oct. 17, 2014.

“He was such a good kid, the kind of kid who would give you the shirt off his back,” said April Conlin, a family friend who is organizing the event,

The Walk for Cross will take place at Polson Park at 1 p.m. starting at the parking lot by the fountain.

“The biggest thing for the walk is to show the family that the community is behind them,” said Conlin. “And that we don’t tolerate bullying.”

Cross, a former Hillview Elementary student, who moved to Vernon from Ontario in 2013, was like a nephew to Conlin. In fact, his entire family was part of her wedding, and he was an usher.

“The family is totally devastated,” she said. “Cross was the first born and he’s also the first to leave.”

Along with attending the walk to show support to the family during this tragic time, Conlin is collecting donations to assist them. Donations can be made in person at the walk (she will be holding a pink sign) or online at www.gofundme.com/ha3hhk. All donations will be presented to the family at the end of the walk.

The walk also aims to send an anti-bullying message, as well as show support for all kids who are struggling with bullying.

“I just hope that kids know that there is help out there. Don’t be afraid of tattling…you need to speak up whether you’re being bullied or see someone being bullied.”