Utah teen organizes anti-bullying gathering

SYRACUSE, Utah — Family and friends gathered around the flag pole at Syracuse Junior High School Friday to address the issue of bullying.

In January, two Utah boys committed suicide within a day of each other. Both claimed they were bullied.

“By doing this, I’m hoping as much people will come and try to stop bullying,” said junior high student Robert Nyland.  

Nyland, 14, helped organize the gathering and said he knows what bullying feels like first hand. Dylan Aranda, 12, a Syracuse Junior High student took his own life last month because of bullying.

“I actually talked to the vice principal and got my schedule changed and so I’m not even seeing them,” Robert said.

He said his friend’s suicide caused him to stand up and reach out.

“It made me feel, a little bit worse than I already was because I was getting bullied as well and on top of that he committed suicide by the same kids that I was getting bullied by.”

Jason Harris, a pastor at North Central Baptist Church, also spoke at the gather. The church is one of many groups coming together to take a stand against bullying.

“We are coming here this morning, offering you encouragement that the bullies that are in the school, they are out numbered. We have people here that want to help you and we want to offer that hope and offer that friendship toward you,” Harris said.

Related: Father of suicide victim speaks at anti-bullying assembly